Auckland's Sarina Wang took home the first Experienced Overall title victory by a female in at least half a decade at the 2019 National Sport Stacking Championships, held at Cullinane College on Saturday.

It is the third year in a row that Whanganui has hosted the nationals, with the first occasion being held at Whanganui Girls' College while the last two have been in Cullinane's gymnasium.

In the battle to have the fastest hands with 12 cups, Wang had been the Experienced Female winner previously at nationals, but Whanganui-Marton's defending Overall champion Caleb Arthur was naturally the favourite on his home turf.

Both of them won their respective Experienced Male and Female divisions, but this time it was Wang who claimed the grand prize.

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Coming third overall was another Aucklander in Ashley Foster – all three of them are current selected members of the Black Stacks squad who are eligible to attend the World Championships in Singapore in April 2020.

Isaiah Hughes prepares to start his timed run to bring the cups down from their configuration and put them back up as quickly as possible.
Isaiah Hughes prepares to start his timed run to bring the cups down from their configuration and put them back up as quickly as possible.

In the Experianced Female division, another local Black Stack in Kyah Chant finished fifth, while Arthur's sister Sophia was third.

The Novice division was once again dominated by local students from St Mary's School, where the sport has been embraced over the last seven years since then-students Jasmine Anthony and Allanah Millar were first selected for national honours.

The Novice Overall title went to Patrick Daignault, ahead of schoolmates Lyrix Meihana-Fore and Jacob Scott respectively.

In June, five current or recent St Mary's students – Chant, Taliah Pollero, Marina Cosford, Grace Harper, and Waiora Hawira – were also named in the Black Stacks squad who can go to Singapore, although this will be their choice as the Kiwis must cover their own travel costs.

There were just over 40 competitors at this year's nationals, coming from Auckland, Wellington and the local contingent.

Competitors came from Auckland and Wellington for this year's nationals.
Competitors came from Auckland and Wellington for this year's nationals.