Briana Williams: NACAC award gives me confidence for 2019

By November 06, 2018

IAAF World U20 100 and 200m champion Briana Williams said winning the 2018 North America Central America and Caribbean (NACAC) Junior Female Athlete of Year Award has given her the confidence to be even better in the coming season.

NACAC announced the awards over the weekend.

“It was very surprising to me when my coach told me, I said to him ‘wow, really?”, she told SportsMax.TV. “But given the success I had this season it gives me a lot of confidence as I prepare for the 2019 season because now I will come back even stronger and determined. I also now know how hard you have to work to become a champion.”

Meanwhile, her coach Ato Boldon said Williams winning the award was just desserts for the hard work put in by the Florida-based teen preparing for last season.

“Awards are always nice. Briana, after being mostly overlooked a year ago, stepped her work ethic up and her whole world changed,” he said while adding that she is working even harder for the coming season.

“Now, she’s approaching the season differently. She wants to run over-distance; she wants to push the limits because she saw what that did last year. She also knows she has a target on her back now. She will get everyone’s best race.”

Williams enjoyed the season of her life in 2018.

In March, days before her 16th birthday, Williams set a world age-group record when she ran 11.13s to win the 100m at the Bob Hayes Invitational in Jacksonville, Florida.

She also won the treble (100m, 200m and 4x100m relay) at the Carifta Games held in the Bahamas before crowning her season with the ultimate prize, the sprint double at the World U20 Championships in Tampere, Finland.

In the 100m, she upset favourite Twanisha Terry of the United States before pulling off another upset in the 200m, winning in a new championship record of 22.50s. She left race favourite Lauren Rain Williams (23.09s) floundering in her wake and was the youngest female to win the title.

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

Related items

  • Jamaica international Gordon seals deal with USL club OKC Energy Jamaica international Gordon seals deal with USL club OKC Energy

    Jamaica international Omar Gordon has joined USL Championship club OKC Energy in a move away from Jamaican Premier League club Montego Bay United.

    The 27-year-old striker is fresh from completing a loan spell at USL Western Conference team San Antonio where he made a solid impression.  Gordon scored six goals in seven appearances and notched four assists.

    Locally, Gordon made a measurable impression with 125 appearances for Montego Bay United, a club he joined in 2011.  He scored 37 goals and helped the club to the Jamaican National Premier League title in 2014 and 2016.

    Energy FC Head Coach Steve Cooke admitted he was pleased to have acquired the player’s services.

    “Having watched him at close quarters playing for San Antonio last year, we always knew he was a threat against us, “Cooke said.

    “He’s big, he’s strong, he’s powerful and he’s got the pace to get in behind – great 1-v-1 attacking defenders. I think he can contribute goals, assists and really take the game to the other teams.”

    Gordon has also previously competed on loan in the United States with Indy Eleven during the 2016 season when he recorded three goals in 20 appearances for the club. 

  • Briana Williams nominated for prestigious 2019 Laureus Sports Breakthrough Award Briana Williams nominated for prestigious 2019 Laureus Sports Breakthrough Award

    In recognition of her outstanding break-out season last year, Jamaica’s fast-emerging track star Briana Williams has been nominated for the prestigious 2019 Laureus World Sports Award for Breakthrough of the Year.

  • Butler believes change of coach will revive Bailey's fortunes Butler believes change of coach will revive Bailey's fortunes

    Craig Butler, agent and guardian of Bayer Leverkusen budding star Leon Bailey, believes the player is set to benefit greatly from a change of coach at the Bundesliga club.

    The 21-year-old player was a standout performer last season, when he made his debut for the club, scoring nine goals and providing six assists.  Bailey’s exploits got the attention of several of Europe’s top clubs with the chance of a move away from the German club seeming a distinct possibility.

    Following a tumultuous period and a dip in form, however, the player fell out of coach Heiko Herrlich’s plans and managed only eight starts for the new term.  After a slow start, Herrlich was replaced by Peter Bosz just ahead of the winter break.  Butler is convinced the change of coach will lead to a revival of fortunes.

    "I am very happy that this change has come about. Leon did not develop under Heiko Herrlich," Butler told SportBild.

    "For Leon, it is very important that he enjoys football, he lives alone in Germany, the family is in Jamaica, and if Leon does not have fun, it kills him,” he added.

    "Top clubs have come forward, Real and Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, Roma, and in recent months they have been surprised that Leon plays so seldom, wondering why a top league player like him is suddenly sitting on the bench."

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.