Island Games 2017: Channel Islands taste gold on day one in Gotland

Dan Halksworth
Team Jersey's Dan Halksworth defended his Island Games triathlon title

The Channel Islands made a golden start to the 2017 Island Games, with Jersey taking two individual triathlon titles.

Jo Gorrod took the women's gold on the streets of Gotland's capital, Visby, before Dan Halksworth won the men's event two years on from his success on home soil at Jersey 2015.

With the swimming leg shortened amid choppy conditions, Gorrod finished just inside the two-hour mark (1:59.43).

"It was tough. There were big waves, you were catching a few," she said.

"It felt great going out on the bike, you had the wind behind you but you had to tackle it on the way back."

Team Jersey also won the men's overall team gold and overall women's team title in triathlon.

Shooting success

Guernsey also tasted gold on Sunday as Matthew Guille and Lee Roussel took the the NSRA 100 Yards Prone Rifle men's team title, while Jersey's Sarah Campion and Susan De Gruchy claimed gold in the women's event.

Meanwhile, Jersey flag-bearer David Turner won silver with teammate Jonathan Bouchard in the 10m Air Rifle team event.

The Channel Islands are always strong in the shooting, and despite having one of the smallest squads in the games, Sark were also celebrating a shooting podium spot on the opening day with Nicholas Dewe and Stefan Roberts pairing up to claim a bronze.

"We're chuffed to bits really," said Dewe. "It's been a bit blustery and windy but we've managed to come through with a nice bronze medal."

Island Games 2017
Fellow Channel Islands Alderney and Jersey met in Gotland two months on from a thrilling Muratti semi-final

Defending football champions denied opening wins

Jersey's women's footballers began the defence of their title with a 3-2 group-stage loss to the Isle of Wight.

The reigning gold medallists were ahead early on through teenager Natasha Keen before slipping 3-1 behind.

Substitute Megan Wood pulled one back with her first touch moments after coming on for her Island Games debut, but Jersey now face the very real prospect of an early exit.

In the men's football, prolific striker Ross Allen scored a late Guernsey equaliser to secure a 1-1 draw against Aland.

Elsewhere, in the Group A clash between fellow Channel Islands Alderney and Jersey, it was Jersey who came out on top as comfortable 3-0 winners thanks to goals from Craig Russell, Jonny Le Quesne and Calvin Weir.

"We're disappointed that we lost, but we lost to a very good side, potentially the winners of the tournament," Alderney boss Alan Adamson told BBC Radio Guernsey.

"After seeing us play in the Muratti they knew what to expect and they're good enough to combat it."

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