Cumbernauld teenager Amy Kennedy makes Scotland debut at Loughborough International
Under normal circumstances, it would have been an occasion to savour, but for the Cumbernauld Amateur Athletics Club member, it was a bittersweet experience as the competition came just a few days after the death of her coach, Colin Sinclair.
“It was difficult,” said Amy, 17, who has just completed her sixth and final year at Greenfaulds High School.
“It was my first Scotland senior vest and I couldn’t share the moment with him.
“It was nice to be able to do it, but not having him there was hard.
“It was quite last-minute but I was expecting it. It was pretty exciting to be able to compete for Scotland for the first time, especially because it was a senior competition and I’m still under 20. That made it even bigger.”
Amy, who specialises in multi-discipline pentathlons and heptathlons, was selected for shot put and finished eighth with a distance of 12.46 metres.
That was well below her best but perhaps understandable given the emotions involved and the fact that she is also only just back from injury.
She said: “I was disappointed with my performance but, given everything coming into it, I think it was fair and no big issue not to expect too much.
“Since the end of the indoor season, I haven’t competed that much. I’ve just been training hard.
“I was injured. I fell over a hurdle and landed on my hip, so I was out for a wee bit.
“That made training pretty hard, so the Scotland debut was my first outdoor performance.”
Amy still has plenty to aim for in 2022 despite missing last weekend’s England Athletics Combined Events Championships in Bedford – a competition in which Cumbernauld clubmate Hannah Wallace placed seventh in the under-20 heptathlon.
She said: “That was my initial aim for the outdoor season but I wasn't quite ready.
“But I’m going to do Scottish combined events in July to do a hep this season and hopefully get picked for Scotland for an international hep in September.
“I’ll be doing the individual Scottish championships and maybe the English as well.”