Senior League

Senior League

The return of competitive league athletics…

Not since August 2019 have athletes from all over the
Midlands region had a competitive league match to look forward to. Finally on
22nd May teams from Cannock, Abingdon, Stoke, Telford, Coventry and of course
BRAT, met at the University of Warwick track for the first senior league match
of the 2022 season.

Two years with no competition, then two matches in the
space of a fortnight. The second match taking place at Abingdon on Sunday 5
June – I therefore thought it would be easier to do a round up of both matches
in a single post.

The first thing to say is how wonderful and gratifying it
is to see that our junior academy is working. The majority of our ‘new look’
senior team is made up from athletes who have all come through our academy – in
the first meeting alone we had eight under 17 women and three under 17 men
making their senior league debut, and all of whom have been with the club for
several years. Some of them have been with us since they were eight years old!

There is always a risk pitching such young, inexperienced
athletes up against experienced seniors but this didn’t seem to prevent any of
them from putting in a set of excellent performances in both matches to date.
Indeed, they have set two club records in the process.

Bonheur Tshibola has set a new women’s 400m hurdles
record in a time of 67.81secs. Whilst the women’s 4×100 relay team broke the
previous club record with a new time of 50.29 secs (all four of them are under
17 athletes – Tywana Kuluziza, Lily Smith, Katie Collis and Isla O’Connor).
This performance ranks them in the top ten under 17 relay teams in the country.

First match winners – in the A string;

Dan Robinson – 5000m, Alexander Clegg – Javelin, Tywana
Kuluziza – 100m

B string wins for;

Jacob Fielden – High jump, Tywana Kuluziza – 200m, Lara
Stevens – Javelin, and a double for Victor Yu in the Shot and Discus.

Result from the first match;

1st Coventry 385 points

2nd Cannock 344 points

3rd BRAT 343 points

4th Stoke 226 points

5th Telford 204 points

6th Abingdon 93 points

The second match held at Abingdon under very damp
conditions saw BRAT put in an even better performance, so much so that we
eventually ran out winners (see table below).

Again an excellent set of individual performances with so
many of our young team gaining top three spots in their events. When set
against the vastly more experienced squads from Coventry and Cannock this
really is a fantastic achievement.

Winners on the day – A string;

JP Stolberg – 3000 Steeplechase, Dan Robinson – 3000m,
Tywana Kuluziza – 100m, the women’s 4 x 100 relay team (Kuluziza, Smith,
Collis, O’Connor) and Alexander Clegg who completed a rare hat-trick of wins –
Javelin, Shot and Discus.

B string winners;

James Colclough – 400m, Richard Bayliss – 1500m, Paul
Joliffe – 3000m, Khari Mitchell-Lewis – 110 hurdles, Jacob Gosnall – High Jump,
Lily Smith – 100m, Isla O’Connor – 200m, May Smith – 800m, Diaz McKenzie – 100
hurdles and Katie Collis – Javelin.

Before finishing this report I’d like to thank not only
the athletes for making the effort to attend the meetings but also to all our
volunteer officials who also gain points for the team (you can have points
deducted for not having the correct amount of qualified officials).

Final table from the second match;

1st BRAT 380 points

2nd Coventry 363 points

3rd Cannock 328 points

4th Stoke 157 points

5th Abingdon 134 points

6th Telford 112 points

With the next meeting coming up in mid-July we are
currently in second place overall behind Coventry. The top two get promoted to
division one.

Some of the victorious BRAT team below…

Nigel Clegg

Senior team manager

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