The Queen’s Baton has been a symbol of hope, of success and of the future for the 1,300 young elite athletes who descended into Nassau, Bahamas, for the Commonwealth Youth Games (CYG).
Starting with a centre-stage arrival at the Opening Ceremony to mark its first time attending the games, the Baton then stayed in the spotlight throughout the five-day event, resulting in thousands of ‘Baton Selfies’ with fresh-faced athletes, proud parents, officials, volunteers and spectators at various events.
Optimism reigned supreme in the sixth edition of the Games – with many of the young athletes now eyeing off a place to compete at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018). The event has quickly earned a reputation for forging lasting friendships between athletes who will soon meet again at a more serious and senior level.
In the hands of gold medalists including Sydney sprinter Bendere Oboya, Gold Coast rugby sevens player Lily Dick or Beaudesert’s rising spring star Riley Day, the Baton was a powerful reminder of Gc2018 and their dream of competing there.
For others, the Bahamas was about more than medals.
At the pool, the smile on an excited yet unassuming Charlie Cox was fixed.
Cox earned bronze in the 200m butterfly, but it was representing Australia at his first major international multi-sporting event that had the Brisbane boy buzzing.
” There’s a great atmosphere and at the Opening Ceremony, it really hit home for me.
It’s incredible meeting new people, the team experience and bonding that goes on.
We’re experiencing all these different cultures and everyone just coming together. It’s been a great learning experience, overcoming setbacks and delays, teaching us, resiliencie, and just being part of an international athlete experience. It was nice to win a medal, but it’s the whole experience really that has been incredible for me.”
The Batton also took a visit to Government House, went sailing in the hands of young Mariners and much more