Nicky Samuels appeals against omission from New Zealand’s Glasgow 2014 squad

Athlete to get final decision on Commonwealth Games spot later this week, with local commentators calling her absence from the starting squad "baffling"

Nicky Samuels racing at the 2010 Mooloolaba ITU Triathlon World Cup

Kiwi athlete Nicky Samuels has appealed against her surprise omission from New Zealand’s starting triathlon team for the Commonwealth Games being held in Glasgow this summer, with a decision expected later this week from the sport’s national governing body Triathlon New Zealand.

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The five-strong team was named last week as Andrea Hewitt, Kate McIlroy, Ryan Sissons, Tony Dodds and Tom Davison, with all five getting starts in the individual races, being held on 24 July. Samuels and Davison were also named as reserves for the mixed relay event, being held on 26 July.

Some commentators in New Zealand are calling Samuels’ omission from the starting team “baffling”, given that Samuels has two WTS top-five finishes to her name in the past 12 months (Auckland 2013 and Kitzbühel 2013).

Of the women who have been named in the squad only Hewitt met the qualifying criteria, with McIlroy being included under the ‘selectors’ discretion’ clause which takes account of athlete injuries and bike mechanical issues. Hewitt placed sixth at WTS Auckland earlier this month, while McIlroy came 13th and Samuels 16th.

Antipodean rivals Australia also named their Commonwealth Games squad last week, with Olympians Emma Moffat and Emma Jackson and former U23 World Champion Aaron Royle among the athletes picked. Defending Ironman UK champion Dan Halksworth has also been selected to represent Jersey at the Games, while the British Home Nations are expected to name their squads shortly.

(Main image: Delly Carr)

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Do you think Nicky Samuels should have been included in the NZ squad? Let us know in the comments below!