A somewhat controversial NBL finals took place at the university wall in Durban over the weekend after a late-in-the-season venue change from Grahamstown. Most WC climbers opted to give the event a miss as a result. Benjamin de Charmoy took the mens title for the third consecutive year, and Candice Bagley claimed 1st in the ladies open.
|Rachelle de Charmoy|
Mathieu Schneuwly brings us a brief run-down of the day:
The warm and humid conditions of Durban played host to the 2012 NBL national finals at UKZN. This year their was an overwhelming attendance of Gauteng and KZN youths who were eager to test themselves against one another and showed plenty of good natured rivalry. There were categories to cater for every age group, including novice and expert categories within the age groups. Everyone was invited!
The qualifiers were kicked off with categories unleashed one at a time to scramble up their problems within a 45 minute time limit. Advantage was given for flash ascents in the qualifiers, meaning people were tentative to be the first person to try, but things quickly got going. The qualifiers ran smoothly and the problem setters did an excellent job to ensure that every style was challenged and that the competitors were kept on their toes and well amused.
The top 5 of each category were entered into the grand final which was scheduled for the afternoon after a well needed lunch.
The finals consisted of three problems with a 5 minutes on 5 minutes off system. The finals problems were of top quality yet somewhat soft although the fields were evenly spread. The national mens title was once again claimed by Benjamin de Charmoy of WC who flashed two of the problems and obtained the bonus hold on the third. Second place was Mathieu Schneuwly also from WC who’s two top outs and a bonus hold were enough to hold off Dylan Vogt of Gauteng who took third place.
The ladies category was a somewhat closer call with an attempt or two seperating the positions. The Ladies title was handed to their very own Candice Bagley followed by Rachelle de charmoy from WC, both of whom shared a flash or two, and whose scores were seperated by mere attempts. Faye Brouard of KZN took third place after a climbing hiatus to end the day as a huge success!
Unfortunately the 2012 NBL final failed to showcase the full field of talent in the NBL circuit, and if the aim of the organisers; to raise the level of the competition to an international standard; is to be achieved, more effort should be made in future events to ensure that the adult open category is fully representative.
|Benj de Charmoy|