ACU athletes shine at World University Games

Australian Catholic University student athletes were amongst a string of world class UniRoos performances that suggest international multi-sport championships can prosper.

Bronze medallist Alec Diamond joined six other ACU students at the FISU Summer World University Games in Chengdu, China.

Queensland sprinter Reece Holder (QUT) set a meet record and an Olympic 400m qualifier and there were countless other elite performances from the UniRoos.

Coming in the wake of speculation around hosting rights for the 2026 Commonwealth Games, the high quality of competition was a timely reminder of the value of multi-sport events that provide a launchpad for Olympic and world championship competition.

"As the Deputy Chair of University Sport Australia, I have watched the results from Chengdu with interest," ACU director of sport, wellbeing and residential life Paul McJannett said.

"There absolutely is a place in the spotlight for multi-sport championships. These World University Games in Chengdu showed that if you support student athletes in their academic and sporting pursuits, they will step up."

Diamond, now a two-time medallist at the World University Games, had earlier made an impact as Australia's flag-bearer at the opening ceremony.

"The Games were a great stepping-stone between the under-20 level and up into the opens," he told Athletics Australia. "It's almost, and especially for multi-events, a perfect middle ground, so having that as a goal and something to achieve really helped me with a bit of direction."

Joining Diamond as medallists in Chengdu were ACU Elite Athlete and Performer Program (EAPP) student Will Thompson (bronze, men's 20km walk team) and water polo bronze medal winners Luci Marsh and Maddy Powells.

Emily Britton was a semi-finalist in the women's 100m hurdles, clocking a world class 13.22secs.

Gymnast Lachlan Smith was a member of the Australian quintet that finished 14th in the men's teams event and Ambrosia Landsberg was eliminated in the first round of the women's taekwondo.

ACU's student athletes have an incredible range of world class events available through FISU the governing body including FISU World University games, FISU World University Championships and the FISU University World Cups (3x3 basketball).

Pictures by the courtesy of Athletics Australia.

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