WORLD beaters: among Cudgen?s all-conquering team at the country surf champs at Woolgoolga at the weekend were, back, Louis Ora
WORLD beaters: among Cudgen?s all-conquering team at the country surf champs at Woolgoolga at the weekend were, back, Louis Ora

Cudgen rampages at titles

By GLEN SCOTT

THE CUDGEN Headland Surf Lifesaving Club crushed its competition in a comprehensive display at the NSW Country Surf Lifesaving Championships at Woolgoolga last weekend.

Cudgen took out the senior, combined and junior sections in a club performance that will have its bigger metropolitan rivals decidedly edgy prior to the state championships on February 10-12.

Ken Small, who coaches the under-15's through to the open team, was as impressed as anyone by the sheer dominance of his squad's performance.

"From a coaches perspective it was a wonderful effort and it gives the club a great platform to build on," Small said.

"It gives us a launching pad to go further and perform at the state championships."

Sandwiched amongst a glut of highlights in Woolgoolga, Cudgen won every male senior board rescue title, open and under-15 boys board races and, but for the early departure on Saturday of star board specialist Scott McCartney for state duties, were likely to make a clean sweep of the board relay as well.

"Unfortunately we lost to Byron Bay in the open relay but we took out the U-19 , U-17 and U-15 sections," Small said.

"If Scott had been able to compete I'm certain we would have taken out the opens as well."

One of the stellar performers for Cudgen was U-15 competitor Ben James, who won medals in every division.

James' helped himself to four gold medals in the U-15 division and two in the U-17 section, while he also grabbed bronze in the U19 board rescue and silver in the open taplin relay.

Rather than claim guru status, Small feels much of his success as a coach has been about coaching at the right time in the right place.

"The under-15 boys are an outstanding group of kids. I've worked this particular group since they were in the under12's," he explained.

"They basically won everything they entered. I think every coach is a good coach.

"It is the talent at your disposal that makes you look a lot better.

"I train everybody hard but they respond. They have a great work ethic."

Cudgen's juniors also enjoyed a memorable campaign, winning the Club Champion Shield for the fourth consecutive year.

There were some excellent performances in the U-8 to U-14 age groups, particularly in the beach and board relays.

Teams won gold in the under 9's, 11's and 12's board relay, the U-12 and U-14 beach relay and the U-8 wade relay. Eight juniors won individual gold medals.



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