SAL Walton

A team weakened by the Lincolnshire County Championships being held on the same day and the usual pressure of exams for many of the younger athletes at this time of year, competed in the second Southern League match at Walton on Thames on Saturday. Here's Ken's report.

Firstly, may I thank the men's team who on the day gave the ladies great support despite the number of absentees and importantly made them feel part of a great team. Secondly, a big thank you to all those ladies who came to Walton, supported their colleagues and really stepped up to the mark, who not only filled in a number of gaps but scored well in the process. The team was weakened by the Lincolnshire County Championships but also a large number of unavailable athletes. Tim and I felt that the whole team really showed the true meaning of being a part of NVH. Thank you to the officials who turned up and officiated on a hot day in the field, lastly to one of the NVH stalwarts and great examples, a thrower with one good leg for offering to hop, literally over the high jump to gain points, Andrea Jenkins.- Thank you all.

Soppy bit over:

Congratulation to Rosie Jacobs for moving her own club record 400m Hurdles forward with a time of 68.9 showing her strength in the later stages taking the race and boosting the team spirit with a hard fought win in the very first race. The men's 400m Hurdles then showed that Team NVH were here to compete and make the opposition work for every point they were going to get. Ben Jones ran a good race in second place and then David Bush smashed his personal best to win the 'B' string, a good 11 points from the first track event.

Meanwhile, Andrea Jenkins was winning the ladies hammer and Kelly Lawrence coming second in the 'B' string, Martin Tinkler and Adam Fidget were winning the men's' shot putt with a maximum points haul. At the same time, Emily Maltby and Devon Spencer were scoring well with a third place and win in the ladies long jump and David Bush and Sean Reidy were jumping in the other direction for the men's high jump. Those events got the day off to an excellent start.

Then we saw the first of our much appreciated "volunteers" and to great effect. Alison Church (4th) and Rebecca Grant Wright (2nd) both stepped up and ran an 800m which I can assure you is not the usual event for either of them and I suspect that I will be reminded of numerous time sin the future. The men kept the points scoring well with Sean Reidy (2nd) and Lloyd Kempson (1st) competing in the men's 800m.

Sean Reidy was scoring well competing in multiple events but David Bush's seven individual events haul of 18 points was an excellent achievement. Similarly NVH stalwart and team man Adam Fidgett amassing 12 points himself in events ranging from the shot putt to 3,000m steeplechase - those Great Eastern Run preparations must be going well - a decathlete hoping over the steeplechase barriers is something to be remembered.

Rosie Jacobs followed up her 400m hurdle win with a win in the 'B' string 100m Hurdles and Maria Hollingsworth competed well but hit two hurdles hard during her "A" string second place, hope the bruising has eased off. Rosie also ran the flat 400m finishing third and was ably supported by Megan Pusey, an under 17 athlete who recorded a personal best 400m of 68.8 for third place and followed that with a personal best 200m with a time of 28.5 over half a second quicker than she had run previously. Maria also stepped in to fill a 200m gap in a tough "A" string race. Maria's hurdling technique enabled her to finish third in the ladies high jump.

Ollie Diloway, was a late substitution for Ashley Sandall following a recurrence of his injury during the warm up. Ollie ran well to take 2nd place in the "B" string matching Daz Holding's second in the "A" string.

The club had "A" and "B" string wins in the ladies 100m with Lily Hughes, taking time off her studies for exams on Monday and Emily Maltby beating good fields to the line. Emily and Devon Spencer also achieved the same maximum points in the ladies triple jump, ably supported by Ellie Mae Stokes as a non-scorer. Ellie Mae and Alison Church both recorded second places in the ladies Javelin taking the pressure of our usual two throwers.

Tristan Cheek won the "B" string pole vault set up by Peter Lewis's third place in the "A" string. Peter followed this with a 3,000m steeplechase 2nd place in the "B" string but had to jump the barriers without the aid of a pole.

Issac Huskisson threw well in the men's hammer, not only winning the "A" string but staking his claim to a place in the NVH British Athletics Team, very good to see the younger members coming through and competing well despite exams and the added pressure those bring along.

The next fixture is on 22 June (Sunday) and is to be held at Colchester -we need to get a strong team out as a number of athletes may not be present due to the England Athletics Under 20 and under 23 Championships being held the same weekend. Please contact Ken Maggs or Tim Needham if interested or for details.

Ken Maggs

Results can be downloaded here.