Watts: Flat landing call won’t deflate spirit

Ali Watson  and Katy Bradley scan finishing tokens for first time parkrunners Rebecca Howell and Jess Gwynn

Gallery: Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun 149

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POSITIVE-THINKING Katy Watts is refusing to let her Loughborough International frustrations hinder her encouraging start to the season.

The former City of Portsmouth javelin ace was denied a possible silver and a morale-boosting performance against some of her main rivals at the prestigious event after her best throw of the day was deemed illegal.

Watts’ fourth-round effort was adjudged to have ‘landed flat’ rather than tip first and was ruled a no throw by one of the field officials.

And that was despite wholesale opinion amongst fellow competitors and coaches that the throw, in access of 49m, looked good.

In the end, it wouldn’t have troubled winner Isabelle Jeffs’ best distance of 56.31m, which is the longest by a British athlete this season.

However, the decision could have seen Watts, who eventually finished third with 47.08m, challenge Rosie Semenytsh (49.63) for second place and put a real marker down for the season ahead.

‘It has spoilt my mood a bit,’ admitted Watts, who was competing for new club Trafford AC.

‘My fourth-round effort appeared to land really well and looked a good throw.

‘It looked like it was just under 50m but then they said it was a red flag.

‘I questioned why it was but the official gave it a red flag because it didn’t land right.

‘However, there was a mark on the ground and everything.

‘It was the most blatant throw ever and I was pleased with it, but they gave it a red flag and it wasn’t even measured.

‘It would have been around 49-50m and I would have been very happy with that.

‘But for my first competition of the season, it’s still okay.

‘Last year I threw 45m for my first competition, so the 47.08m I did record is up on that, anyway.

‘It was a good competition.

‘I beat the girl representing England (Eloise Meakins), so I was quite pleased with that, too.

‘And there were a few others who I beat also.’

Watts, who will compete at the Bedford International Games on Monday, is determined to make the England Commonwealth Games squad for Glasgow 2014.

A throw in excess of 49m at such an early stage of the javelin season would have given the onlooking selectors something to think about.

It would also have put her third or fourth in the UK rankings.

Instead, Watts currently sits sixth in the standings after one outing so far.

However, she recognises there’s still plenty of the campaign to go to make an impression.

‘It’s a bit frustrating, but I’m okay – I know it’s there,’ she added.

‘It would have been better to have a 49m on my record because it puts you higher up in the rankings.

‘But I just have to get on with it and make it a better one next time.

‘One of the England coaches was watching and gave me some stuff to take away and think about afterwards, which was nice.

‘There’s still positives to take from it and there’s loads of other competitions, so it’s not the end of the world.’