Teen throws the distance

EYEING THE PRIZE: Grade 9 Crescent School student William Christodoulou says technique is key when it comes to throwing events like javelin and discus. (FRANCIS CRESCIA/TOWN CRIER)

William Christodoulou aims to be in top 8 at OFSAA track meet

“Do you need me to spell my name for you?”

William Christodoulou joshed over the phone as he took a breather from training for his OFSAA track meet in London June 3-5.

The jovial grade 9 athlete is looking for some personal bests in javelin and discus when he represents his Crescent School in Middlesex County.

He’s also keenly aware of his competition.

“The top four kids that qualified from CISAA (for discus) all won Metros, so they’re all private school kids,” he said, noting St. Michael’s College and De La Salle will be his opponents at OFSAA.

And he’s always looking for that added advantage to stick it to his rivals.

“At this point, especially Metros and OFSAA, it’s mostly technique training,” Christodoulou said. “You can’t really build any muscle in a week or two.

“I’ve been fine tuning finishes on throws, spins, plants and all that stuff,” he added. “That’s what I’ve been focusing on because that gives you the extra two, three metres to rank higher.”

His goals at OFSAA are top eight finishes in both sports as well as to beat his school’s record of 40.76 metres in the discus.

“I always have someone else’s best on my mind to beat,” he said.

Crescent coach Fraser Bertram acknowledged his young charge’s high-flying resolve.

“One of the biggest things for him is the javelins and discuses go home with him and he’s training on the weekend on his own,” he said. “He’s not just hanging them up. That’s certainly helping him a lot.”

Training Christodoulou is former decathlete Ben Haber, and a little help from father George Christodoulou, who threw a few discuses in his day, doesn’t hurt either.

“We have a field out back of my house so whenever I’m done studying and we have time (my dad and I) just go out back — I have the discuses in my bag and sometimes I bring the javs home too,” the young Christodoulou said.

He doesn’t just field the projectiles either, Bertram said. Christodoulou has hockey on his resumé as well.

“He’s very responsive – he wants to learn, wants to improve,” Bertram said. “He’s got that innate athletic ability to pick up little cues really well and put them to work.”

His athleticism was what caught the eye of Crescent senior Tarun Koshy, who taught him javelin.

“I was originally a high jumper and a sprinter and one of the senior guys at my school was a javelin thrower and he came up to me and said, ‘You’ve got a lot of speed, do you think you can throw something?’” Christodoulou said. “So we had a couple of practices with him and he trained me.”

Christodoulou says he gets a rush out of the competition.

“Other than the fact that it looks pretty awesome to have a spear in your hands,” he said, laughing, “the thing that drives me to the discus and the jav is mostly it’s fun and keeps you in great shape.

“When you throw a javelin right, it’s pretty sick.”

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