Published Thursday 17 January 2013

New Zealand’s campaign at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival in Sydney got off to a fantastic start today, with four medals on the water.

The first medal came from Jarrod Fitzgerald (17, Gisborne) and Zac Quickenden (18, Christchurch), winning silver in the Canoe/Kayak Sprint K-2 1000m. Quickenden then added a bronze to his collection in the K-1 1000m.

It was a similar story in the women’s competition, with Aimee Fisher (17, Hastings) and Lucy Johnson (18, Christchurch) winning silver in the K-2 500m. Johnson then went on to collect her second silver of the day in the K-1 500m.

In other action on day one, New Zealand’s mixed badminton team lost 5-0 to Chinese-Taipei in the first round and will face Australia tomorrow morning.

Meanwhile, the entire New Zealand team of 156 athletes are this evening marching alongside more than 1500 athletes from 30 countries in the athletes’ parade at the Opening Ceremony for the festival.

18-year-old Waikato triathlete Mikalya Nielsen was yesterday named flag bearer for the event.

The three-on-three basketball, cycling, golf, shooting, swimming and weightlifting competitions begin tomorrow.