Lyndon on mend as season begins

TANYN LYNDON has given his rivals a running start in the lead-up to the return of the Australian Surf Lifesaving Championships to the Gold Coast next March.

The 17-year-old Lennox Head-Alstonville water competitor has had a horror start to his campaign to add the Australian Under-19 ironman title to the Under-15 crown he won in 2007 and successive Under-17 titles for the past two years.

Lyndon’s domination of the event since the controversial switch of the national titles from Kurrawa to Perth in 2007 is in danger of being broken after a crippling leg injury in a premier reserve soccer match for the Lennox Head club in Lismore in May.

The former Lennox Head-Alstonville SLSC nipper broke a fibula, dislocated an ankle and tore ligaments which required surgery to have plates and seven screws inserted through the ankle. He was laid-up for 12 weeks and has since undergone extensive physiotherapy.

It has thrown Lyndon’s training program into turmoil and his competitive lead-up to the national titles comeback at Kurrawa is in disarray.

The injury has cost him a start in the rich Coolangatta Gold event last month and a place in the Nutri-Grain Ironman trials at Tugun.

This week he dropped another bombshell, announcing he was withdrawing from all competition, including local, branch and interbranch competition, in a bid to be fully fit for the NSW titles at Swansea-Belmont in February.

“Part of it was on doctors’ advice and the other part was my own intuition, knowing the injury needed more time to fully heel,” a disappointed Lyndon said.

“It means I’ll be just going straight into the State and national titles as prepared as I can be.

“I told myself, my coach Lou Wilson and my parents I wouldn’t be racing until February, and that’s where it stands.”

Lyndon, who turns 18 in January, is still sticking to a ‘patched up’ training schedule that includes an hour ski and board session in the morning and a 90-minute swimming session in the afternoon.

However, more physical leg-work is restricted to rehab-style jogging in shorter intervals.

He is, however, confident he can be fit enough to tackle the Under-19 national ironman title back at Kurrawa and is looking forward to the more challenging surf conditions.

They are sentiments shared by his coach, who conceded this week the young champion was looking ‘as fit as ever’.

“The enforced lay-off certainly presents its own challenges, but don’t under-estimate Tanyn’s stamina and will to win,” Wilson said.

“He came home strongly to defend his Under-17 title last year when it seemed all was lost, and he can certainly do it again in any surf Kurrawa is capable of throwing up.”

Lyndon is the only competitor to win three successive ironman age titles since they were introduced at national level five years ago.

If successful in winning four in March he will equal the senior level feats of Grant Kenny (Alexandra Headland) who won the national title from 1980 to 1983 and Ty Hurst who won his first national crown with North Burleigh in 1999 and then with Tugun in 2000, 2001 and 2002.

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