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Junior League team back

Sunday 29 August 2010

In a difficult promotion match at Derby today, Sunday 28th August, the club's National Junior League team finished second and regained its place in the Junior League after slipping out last season. Cardiff's Gareth Winter was named Man of the Match for his winning performance of 51.50m in the Discus.

Team Manager Debbie Bull writes:

It was a small band of very bleary eyed travellers that met at Sophia Gardens for a 7.00am start for the National Junior League promotion match in Derby. The Inter - Regionals and holidays having taking their toll on the number of athletes available, it was going to be a hard fought competition.

We left the bright sunny start to the day behind and headed North, arriving in Derby just in time to see the monthly rainfall double in about 30 minutes. Concerned about the depth of water on track for the 400mh Debbie walked it twice to check on the safety around the barriers. Happily the sun came out just in time to dry the track sufficiently for the start of the programme. With the rain sent on it's way, it was the turn of the wind to do its best - and it surely managed a new PB of -6.6 m/s in the 200m !

The weather wasn't the only thing to have the Team Managers chewing their nails as the match was an absolute roller-coaster with the top 3 teams changing positions with nearly every result that came in. Cardiff seemed to alternate between 2nd and 3rd mainly with an occasional 1st or 4th thrown in to keep us on our toes.

With only the top 2 to gain promotion, the athletes pulled out all the stops to fill as many events as they possibly could. It would be unfair to single out any athlete as they were all fantastic, so a huge well done to Jamaul Whyte, Oliver Jeffries, Sam Gordon, Abdi Saleban, Joseff Whitmarsh-Knight, Michael Ward, Tom Whitmarsh-Knight, Jacob Brennan, Darran Jones, Gareth Winter, Jacob Matthews and Bradley Cole for the boys; and Gwen Williams, Elinor Lewis, Danielle Mill, Sam Cogan, Bethan Daw, Lauren Regan and Ayla Phillips for the girls.

There is one person who must have a special mention and that is Gareth Winter (pictured receiving his award) who was named Man of the Match for his performance of 51.50m in the Discus.





     Gareth Winter

It all came down to the final event of the day - the 4 x 400m relay - to decide our fate. And what a decision that turned out to be, in more ways than one. The girls ran first and boy did they run, maintaining their lead of a couple of metres for the entire race despite some very fierce competition from behind. Considering how much effort the girls had already put in to cover most of the events between them, it beggars believe where they got their stamina from to keep up the relentless pace. It was an absolute spectacle to behold. The last leg runner threw herself over the line before collapsing in a heap from sheer exhaustion.

I am sure I wasn't the only one with a tear in my eye!

It was then the boys turn to take the reins and they took up the challenge and finished with a place or two to spare to guarantee our place in the Premier Division next year - or so we hoped at the time.Then the announcer called a Cardiff Team Manager to meet the Track Referee - never good news. They were considering disqualifying the girls as the baton had not been passed to the official at the end of the race. I pointed put that our athlete has collapsed with exhaustion and he asked to speak to her. This done and apologies and explanations given we held our breath awaiting his decision. We were not the only team to fall foul of this and this probably helped him to arrive at the correct decision to let the result stand.

Yes, I DID have tears in my eyes again. I can honestly say it was the most emotional day I have ever had as a Team Manager.

The Team Managers would like to wish every success to the athletes leaving us to join the Seniors next season, and look forward to receiving the new intake to do it all again next year. A big thank you also to the officials who have supported us this year - Richard Morgan, Howard Brown, Tracey Cogan and Alan & Kyle Garrison - we couldn't do it without you.

Congratulations to Debbie Bull and her team.

The final match score was:   1. Rugby & Northampton AC (473 points);  2. Cardiff AAC (461);  3. Wolverhampton & Bilston AC (454.5);  4. Cheltenham & County AC (421);  5. Plymouth & Cornwall AC (419);  6. Team CDAV (357);  7. Tipton H (310.5).

Cardiff's individual event winners were:   Jamaul Whyte (200m A);  Darren Jones (400mH B);  Tom Whitmarsh- Knight (2000m s/c A);  Gareth Winter (Discus A & Shot Put A);  Jacob Matthews (Discus B & Shot Put B);  Bradley Cole (Hammer B);  Ayla Phillips (Shot Put A).

To view the full results, click on RESULTS.