Ruthless Meares regains Australian sprint crown

Anna Meares was forced to show her ruthless streak at the Dunc Gray Velodrome in Sydney to reclaim her grip on the Australian women's sprint title, a title the 27-year-old hasn't won since 2009.

With Friday’s win over New South Wales' Kaarle McCulloch, Meares has now won gold in the women's sprint five times, having previously won in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2009.

Given that Meares and McCulloch are world champions in the team sprint and train together in Adelaide, the final was always going to be a close one. Both cruised through qualifying and the semi finals. When it came to the gold medal showdown, only half a wheel separated them, with Meares ensuring there was no need for a third and final race.

"It was always going to be tough against Kaarle and it's always been in the past but that's what makes it fun for me," Meares explained after her win. "I like a challenge and it's my first national title as a South Australian representative as well so that's very special."

A smiling Meares said that letting McCulloch win was simply not an option.

"There's only been one spot at the Olympics and I've filled that in the past two occasions and I know that I've been what stopped her trying to achieve her goal of going to the Olympics," she said.

"As much as I feel for her when I'm off the track, I can't feel that way when I'm on the track otherwise I'm going to be the one that's losing the races and the shoe's on the other foot. So I'm always as aggressive as possible on the track and I'm always aware of what it feels like to get beat. I've had the pleasure of being number one for a while aside from last year when Kaarle won.”

"I remember when I was coming up and I got beat every race. Michelle Ferris beat me by 50m in one race, Lyndelle Higginson schooled me, Kerrie schooled me - that's the sort of thing that makes you a bit tougher in the long run. I'm hoping that I'm pissing Kaarle off because by the time I retire she's going to be one hard girl to beat."

McCulloch meanwhile was resigned to Meares' current superiority.

"I think I have got to the stage now that I am racing against the best rider in the world who is at the peak of her career, and I am five years away from my peak," she said.

"I got beaten by half a wheel length in both the races today but in a couple more years time, when I get a little bit more strength in my legs, I have no doubt that I could beat Anna. But at the moment, it is not just quite there."

Dennis, Hepburn face off in 4000m pursuit

The final of the men's 4000m team pursuit between a South Australian team featuring world champion Rohan Dennis, and Queensland featuring another member of Australia's world champion team, Michael Hepburn, proved interstate rivalry was alive and well.

Dennis, joined by Alexander Edmondson, Damien Howson and Glenn O'Shea were dominant from the outset of the showdown and were spurred on by their opponent jibes and took the gold in a time of 4:02.389.

"We knew we had to lift," explained Dennis. "Queensland was giving us a bit of stick and a bit of smack talk. We were pretty confident we knew we had to go out faster. I bumped my gear up so I could do a little bit of extra work to help the guys across the line."

With two world champions in the mix, who knew each other's skills back-to-front, extra pressure was on Dennis to ensure his team went home with the title for the second year running.

"I knew he'd [Hepburn]be pretty keen to win the jersey this year and his form is pretty good every year in the team's pursuit so I was a little bit worried before the heats about what sort of turns he'd be pulling." Dennis admitted. "We didn't want to give it up to the Queenslanders – ever really."

In the men's 15km scratch race, New South Wales' Scott Law made a mad dash two laps out from the finish to put an end to West Australian Luke Dubridge's hopes of a maiden gold medal at the 2011 national titles. Western Australia's Stephen Hall claimed silver while South Australia's Glenn O'Shea took bronze.

There was drama in the men's under 19 sprint when Victoria's Luke Parker and the ACT's Nathan Hart collided on turn one in the first heat of their final. Both went down hard, Hart was up straight away, but Parker seemingly okay but took a little longer to recover after a bit of blood was spilt.

Fastest qualifier Hart took the win in a re-started first heat before Parker took the second in a drag race. Hart then pulled out of the decider with cramps giving Parker the overall win.

Victoria's Adele Sylvester claimed the sprint double with her win in the women’s under 19 sprint over Western Australia's Allee Proud, having taken out the 500m time trial on Thursday night.

In the Para kilometre tandem finals, South Australia's Felicity Johnson and pilot Stephanie Morton (1:09.999) set a new Australian record in their gold medal ride and made it back-to-back Australian titles in the event.

Queensland's Paralympic bronze medallist Bryce Lindores and pilot Victoria's Sean Finning (1:06:325) were streaks ahead of their opposition to claim the gold medal in the men's event.
 

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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 1 Ride 1
1Anna Meares (SA)0:00:12.150
2Holly Williams (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 1 Ride 2
1Anna Meares (SA)0:00:12.389
2Holly Williams (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 2 Ride 1
1Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)0:00:12.450
2Catherine Culvenor (ACT)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 2 Ride 2
1Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)0:00:13.031
2Catherine Culvenor (ACT)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Ride 1
1Stephanie Morton (SA)0:00:12.348
2Apryl Eppinger (PHI)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Ride 2
1Stephanie Morton (SA)0:00:12.279
2Apryl Eppinger (PHI1)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 4 Ride 1
1Cassandra Kell (NSW)
DNSEmily Rosemond (QLD)
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Women Sprint 5th - 8th
1Apryl Eppinger (PHI)0:00:12.130
2Holly Williams (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
3Catherine Culvenor (ACT)Row 2 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Race 1
1Anna Meares (SA)0:00:12.032
2Cassandra Kell (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Race 2
1Anna Meares (SA)0:00:11.990
2Cassandra Kell (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Semi Finals Heat 2 Race 1
1Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)0:00:13.053
2Stephanie Morton (SA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Semi Finals Heat 2 Race 2
1Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)0:00:13.199
2Stephanie Morton (SA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Finals 1-2 Race 1
1Anna Meares (SA)0:00:12.057
2Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Finals 1-2 Race 2
1Anna Meares (SA)0:00:11.873
2Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Finals 3-4 Race 1
1Cassandra Kell (NSW)0:00:12.383
2Stephanie Morton (SA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Finals 3-4 Race 2
1Cassandra Kell (NSW)0:00:12.458
2Stephanie Morton (SA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women Sprint Final Result
1Anna Meares (SA)
2Kaarle Mcculloch (NSW)
3Cassandra Kell (NSW)
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 1 Race 1
1Nathan Hart (ACT)0:00:11.503
2Emerson Harwood (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 1 Race 2
1Nathan Hart (ACT)0:00:11.832
2Emerson Harwood (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 2 Race 1
1Timothy Mcmillan (NSW)0:00:11.283
2Jacob Schmid (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 2 Race 2
1Timothy Mcmillan (NSW)0:00:11.097
2Jacob Schmid (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Race 1
1Luke Parker (VIC)0:00:11.535
2Luke Zaccaria (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Race 2
1Luke Zaccaria (WA)0:00:10.954
2Luke Parker (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Race 3
1Luke Parker (VIC)0:00:11.236
2Luke Zaccaria (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 4 Race 1
1Jaron Gardiner (VIC)0:00:11.760
2Ben Young (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 4 Race 2
1Jaron Gardiner (VIC)0:00:11.178
2Ben Young (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint 5th - 8th
1Jacob Schmid (VIC)0:00:11.200
2Emerson Harwood (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
3Luke Zaccaria (WA)Row 2 - Cell 2
4Ben Young (NSW)Row 3 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Race 1
1Jaron Gardiner (VIC)0:00:11.280
2Nathan Hart (ACT)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Race 2
1Jaron Gardiner (VIC)0:00:11.654
2Nathan Hart (ACT)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 2 Race 1
1Timothy Mcmillan (NSW)0:00:11.170
2Luke Parker (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 2 Race 2
1Timothy Mcmillan (NSW)0:00:11.185
2Luke Parker (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Final 1-2 Ride 1
1Timothy Mcmillan (NSW)0:00:11.012
2Jaron Gardiner (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Final 1-2 Ride 2
1Timothy Mcmillan (NSW)0:00:10.987
2Jaron Gardiner (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men U19 Sprint Final 3-4 Ride 1
1Luke Parker (VIC)
DNSNathan Hart (ACT)
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 1 Race 1
1Adele Sylvester (VIC)0:00:12.468
2Micaela Hogan (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 1 Race 2
1Adele Sylvester (VIC)0:00:12.517
2Micaela Hogan (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 2 Race 1
1Imogen Jelbart (VIC)0:00:13.131
2Imogen Hines (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 2 Race 2
1Imogen Jelbart (VIC)0:00:13.267
2Imogen Hines (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Race 1
1Rikki Belder (SA)0:00:12.741
2Allee Proud (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Race 2
1Allee Proud (WA)0:00:13.144
2Rikki Belder (SA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 3 Race 3
1Allee Proud (WA)0:00:12.921
2Rikki Belder (SA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 4 Race 1
1Caitlin Ward (VIC)0:00:12.544
2Madison Law (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Quarter Finals Heat 4 Race 2
1Caitlin Ward (VIC)0:00:12.612
2Madison Law (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint 5th - 8th
1Rikki Belder (SA)0:00:12.710
2Madison Law (NSW)Row 1 - Cell 2
3Imogen Hines (NSW)Row 2 - Cell 2
4Micaela Hogan (NSW)Row 3 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Ride 1
1Adele Sylvester (VIC)0:00:12.251
2Caitlin Ward (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Ride 2
1Adele Sylvester (VIC)0:00:12.515
2Caitlin Ward (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 2 Ride 1
1Allee Proud (WA)0:00:12.430
2Imogen Jelbart (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Semi Finals Heat 1 Ride 2
1Allee Proud (WA)0:00:12.501
2Imogen Jelbart (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Final 1-2 Ride 1
1Adele Sylvester (VIC)0:00:12.343
2Allee Proud (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Final 1-2 Ride 2
1Adele Sylvester (VIC)0:00:12.884
2Allee Proud (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Final 3-4 Ride 1
1Imogen Jelbart (VIC)0:00:12.692
2Caitlin Ward (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Women U19 Sprint Final 3-4 Ride 2
1Imogen Jelbart (VIC)0:00:12.585
2Caitlin Ward (VIC)Row 1 - Cell 2
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Men 4000m Team Pursuit Qualification
1South Australia0:04:07.000
Row 1 - Cell 0 Edward BissakerRow 1 - Cell 2
Row 2 - Cell 0 Rohan DennisRow 2 - Cell 2
Row 3 - Cell 0 Damien HowsonRow 3 - Cell 2
Row 4 - Cell 0 Glenn O'sheaRow 4 - Cell 2
2Queensland0:04:08.300
Row 6 - Cell 0 Michael HepburnRow 6 - Cell 2
Row 7 - Cell 0 Jordan KerbyRow 7 - Cell 2
Row 8 - Cell 0 Mitchell MulhernRow 8 - Cell 2
Row 9 - Cell 0 Nicholas SchultzRow 9 - Cell 2
3Western Australia0:04:09.600
Row 11 - Cell 0 Luke DurbridgeRow 11 - Cell 2
Row 12 - Cell 0 Michael FreibergRow 12 - Cell 2
Row 13 - Cell 0 Stephen HallRow 13 - Cell 2
Row 14 - Cell 0 Glenn HarrisRow 14 - Cell 2
4Victoria0:04:09.900
Row 16 - Cell 0 Jack CummingsRow 16 - Cell 2
Row 17 - Cell 0 Evan HullRow 17 - Cell 2
Row 18 - Cell 0 Alexander MorganRow 18 - Cell 2
Row 19 - Cell 0 Rick SandersRow 19 - Cell 2
5New South Wales0:04:10.100
Row 21 - Cell 0 Jack BeckinsaleRow 21 - Cell 2
Row 22 - Cell 0 Caleb EwanRow 22 - Cell 2
Row 23 - Cell 0 Jackson LawRow 23 - Cell 2
Row 24 - Cell 0 Tirian McmanusRow 24 - Cell 2
6New South Wales0:04:13.100
Row 26 - Cell 0 Aaron DonnellyRow 26 - Cell 2
Row 27 - Cell 0 Benjamin HarveyRow 27 - Cell 2
Row 28 - Cell 0 Scott LawRow 28 - Cell 2
Row 29 - Cell 0 Jackson-Leigh RathboneRow 29 - Cell 2
7Western Australia0:04:14.100
Row 31 - Cell 0 Mitchell BensonRow 31 - Cell 2
Row 32 - Cell 0 Trent DerecourtRow 32 - Cell 2
Row 33 - Cell 0 Nicholas Graham-DawsonRow 33 - Cell 2
Row 34 - Cell 0 Bradley LinfieldRow 34 - Cell 2
8South Australia0:04:17.400
Row 36 - Cell 0 Alexander EdmondsonRow 36 - Cell 2
Row 37 - Cell 0 Robert-Jon MccarthyRow 37 - Cell 2
Row 38 - Cell 0 Miles ScotsonRow 38 - Cell 2
Row 39 - Cell 0 George TansleyRow 39 - Cell 2
9Queensland0:04:17.400
Row 41 - Cell 0 David EdwardsRow 41 - Cell 2
Row 42 - Cell 0 Brendan HillRow 42 - Cell 2
Row 43 - Cell 0 Jesse KerrisonRow 43 - Cell 2
Row 44 - Cell 0 Jordan ToyneRow 44 - Cell 2
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Men 4000m Team Pursuit Finals 1-2
1South Australia0:04:02.400
Row 1 - Cell 0 Alexander EdmondsonRow 1 - Cell 2
Row 2 - Cell 0 Rohan DennisRow 2 - Cell 2
Row 3 - Cell 0 Damien HowsonRow 3 - Cell 2
Row 4 - Cell 0 Glenn O'sheaRow 4 - Cell 2
2Qeensland0:04:04.900
Row 6 - Cell 0 Michael HepburnRow 6 - Cell 2
Row 7 - Cell 0 Jordan KerbyRow 7 - Cell 2
Row 8 - Cell 0 Mitchell MulhernRow 8 - Cell 2
Row 9 - Cell 0 Nicholas SchultzRow 9 - Cell 2
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Men 4000m Team Pursuit Finals 3-4
1Western Australia0:04:08.300
Row 1 - Cell 0 Luke DurbridgeRow 1 - Cell 2
Row 2 - Cell 0 Michael FreibergRow 2 - Cell 2
Row 3 - Cell 0 Stephen HallRow 3 - Cell 2
Row 4 - Cell 0 Glenn HarrisRow 4 - Cell 2
2Victoria0:04:11.200
Row 6 - Cell 0 Jack CummingsRow 6 - Cell 2
Row 7 - Cell 0 Evan HullRow 7 - Cell 2
Row 8 - Cell 0 Alexander MorganRow 8 - Cell 2
Row 9 - Cell 0 Rick SandersRow 9 - Cell 2
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Men U19 4000m Team Pursuit Finals
1Victoria0:04:11.175
Row 1 - Cell 0 Jack CummingsRow 1 - Cell 2
Row 2 - Cell 0 Evan HullRow 2 - Cell 2
Row 3 - Cell 0 Alexander MorganRow 3 - Cell 2
Row 4 - Cell 0 Rick SandersRow 4 - Cell 2
2New South Wales0:04:06.454
Row 6 - Cell 0 Jack BeckinsaleRow 6 - Cell 2
Row 7 - Cell 0 Caleb EwanRow 7 - Cell 2
Row 8 - Cell 0 Jackson LawRow 8 - Cell 2
Row 9 - Cell 0 Tirian McmanusRow 9 - Cell 2
3Western Australia0:04:13.696
Row 11 - Cell 0 Mitchell BensonRow 11 - Cell 2
Row 12 - Cell 0 Trent DerecourtRow 12 - Cell 2
Row 13 - Cell 0 Nicholas Graham-DawsonRow 13 - Cell 2
Row 14 - Cell 0 Bradley LinfieldRow 14 - Cell 2
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Men 15Km Scratch Race Final
1Scott Law (NSW)0:17:42
2Stephen Hall (WA)Row 1 - Cell 2
3Glenn O'shea (SA)Row 2 - Cell 2
4Mitchell Lovelock-Fay (ACT)Row 3 - Cell 2
5Luke Durbridge (WA)Row 4 - Cell 2
6Jackson-Leigh Rathbone (NSW)Row 5 - Cell 2
DNFBenjamin Harvey (NSW)Row 6 - Cell 2
DNFEdward Bissaker (SA)Row 7 - Cell 2
DNFDamien Howson (SA)Row 8 - Cell 2
DNFAaron Jones (TAS)Row 9 - Cell 2
DNFLuke Ockerby (TAS)Row 10 - Cell 2
DNFBrent Nelson (VIC)Row 11 - Cell 2
DNFMichael Freiberg (WA)Row 12 - Cell 2

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