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Medals all round for Harriers

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WELSH Athletics held its annual Senior Indoor Athletics Championships on the final weekend in January (Jan 26-27) at Cardiff’s National Indoor Athletics Centre and incorporated the Combined Events Indoor International.

Teams from Great Britain, France, Poland, Spain and the Czech Republic competed alongside Wales’ top senior competitors over two days in the Welsh Capital.

The Pentathlon and Heptathlon, including the 60m, 60m Hurdles, Shot, Long Jump and Pole Vault was contested for male and female over two busy days for the participants from across Europe. Picking up points was all-important in that element.

Five Carmarthen Harriers athletes entered with medals won in three disciplines.

Kieran Roberts qualified from the senior men’s 800m heats with a comfortable win and was followed by a second-place finish in the final with a time of 1:55:76. As a result, Roberts become Welsh champion with the winner having ran as a guest from England.

Speaking shortly after finishing, he said: “I haven’t raced a lot in the last three years (due to injury), so I’m starting to enjoy the sport again and it’s nice to get a race under my belt. I’m working with my coach and a good group of boys, which makes it a lot easier.”

The sprints duo of Glen Elsdon and Lewis Evans went head to head against some of Wales’ fastest men over the short and fast 60m with both qualifying for their respective A and B finals.

In a blanket finish and the closest race of the whole weekend, Evans was sixth in the same time of 7.16 as the fourth and fifth places, whilst in the A final Elsdon moved up to fifth overall in 7.02. This was due to two of the pre-race favourites disqualified following a series of re-starts.

Over in the field, Beca Roberts was one of seven competitors in the senior women’s triple jump. Her best attempt of 10.68m came in the sixth and final round, and this leap was enough to take third place and a bronze medal in the process.

Lili Church was the final athlete in action inside the arena towards the latter stages of the championships. In the women’s high jump, she cleared the early rounds and managed to go over 1.66m which ensured that she headed back West with a gold medal having become joint Welsh champion with her nearest rival.

Meanwhile, Pembrokeshire Harriers added another five medals to the tally. Gold was won by Ella Wintle in the under 15 girls’ 300m where she produced another dominant display in 42.59.

Matthew Williams in a fast 1500m race clocked 4:00:15 on his way to silver, with Flavia Jenkins (43.99) and Grace Griffiths (5:33:25) securing bronze in both the 300m and 1500m track races.

Ella’s sister Lucy Wintle made it into the final of the same 300m race and came in fourth in a close one for 44.02. Abigail Buxton cleared 1.61m in the high jump for bronze.

Llanelli AC’s Niamh Roberts ran a time of 64.78 in heat 1 of 3 400m heats.

Elsewhere on the same day, a number of teams from West Wales made the short journey over to Crymych Leisure Centre for the Team Pursuit event on a very windy and cold day, and attracted another large turnout of over 60 teams from local clubs.

Carmarthen Harriers saw two teams entered and recorded finishing times of 3:42:13 and 4:23:55. Running for Carmarthen Harriers were Paul Clarke, David Jones, Maddie Morgan, Guto Morgans, Paul Lynock, Jonathan Cox, Jake Morgan and Kate Parker.

The Pembrokeshire Harriers club saw a record turnout of 55 attend. Highlights included a win for the vets ladies team consisting of Sue Lloyd, Sue Mace, Helen Munro, Deb Garner and Qumran Nahar, whilst the squad of Daryl John, Ross McNally, Tom Sinton, Shaun Newbury and Lee Shannon did not only win their category but won the race overall.

The John Collins Gwent Cross Country League returns this Saturday as it heads back to the first ever venue in 1963 at Pontypool Park.

Following a months break in January to give way for a series of schools’ competitions, races in the penultimate fixture will be held for under 11 athletes through to the seniors and masters as the campaign enters the second half of the winter season.

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Sport

Mumbles win well against Ammanford seconds

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AMMANFORD seconds suffered a heavy 125 run defeat at the hands of Mumbles at Marespool.

Winning the toss, Ammanford invited Mumbles to bat first, and a terrific 188 run partnership for the second wicket, featuring Ben Jones (94) and Stuart Seaton (77), helped the home team to a healthy 221 for 4 in 45 overs.

Several Ammanford batsmen got into double figures but none were able to stay long enough to make any impression on the run chase. Eirian Morgan top-scored with 25, but the Ammanford innings finished disappointingly on 96 all out.

Gethin Morgan and Phil Roche each took three wickets for Mumbles.

Thirds beaten by Landore

Ammanford thirds travelled to Landore only to lose their match by 50 runs.

Ammanford skipper Carl Griffiths put Landore in to bat, and the home team scored 148 for 9. Landore
skipper Terry Summerfield top-scored with 33.

Ammanford’s Tom Davies was chief wicket-taker with 4 for 38.

Despite a solid 30 from opener and man-of-the-match Tom Davies, Ammanford failed to get anywhere near the required target and folded their innings on 98 inside 34 overs.

The defeat dropped them out of the top half of division six on the SWCA.

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Cwmamman United Juniors host end of season event

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CWMAMMAN United juniors held their end of season event at Clwb Godre’r Mynydd Ddu Glanamman.

As they celebrated throughout the day with their different age groups from Under 6 to Under 14 it looked as if almost every child in the Cwm had attended at some point.

The Juniors section at the club has grown to around 150 children over the last couple of years and with a dedicated and enthusiastic group of committee, coaches and volunteers behind them the club is excitedly anticipating further growth.

A fantastic time was had by all with all age groups proudly having their moment in the sun.

Robert Griffiths the Clubs Junior Chairman said: “I have to thank all our fantastic people at the club that get the kids out playing whether sorting games, coaching, fund raising or organising events such as our club parties and awards such as these.

“We continiue to grow and if your child would like to be part of a safe, healthy and fun environment they are most welcome here.”

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Depleted Ammanford beaten by seven wickets

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A DEPLETED Ammanford lost by seven wickets to Bridgend Town in a rain affected match at windswept Newbridge Fields on Satuday (Jun 25).

With the start delayed by over an hour because of rain, the match was reduced to 39 overs before a ball was bowled, and the toss immediately became the crucial factor in deciding the game’s outcome.

Bridgend won it and, predictably enough, put Ammanford in to bat.

The writing was on the wall as the visitors lost two wickets for 9 runs on an unpredictable wicket which was one of the first bowler-friendly tracks encountered this season.

Only four batters reached double figures as wickets fell at regular intervals. Top scorer was 14 year old wicket-keeper Gruffudd Owen (19no) who took the game to the visitors and looked capable of scoring many more had he not run out of partners.

Ammanford were all out for 90 inside 30 overs.

Tea was taken early as more heavy rain swept across Newbridge Fields, but unfortunately for Ammanford the sun made a reappearance and play eventually resumed.

The Bridgend batters did not have it all their own way, quickly losing both openers to opening bowler Owen Davies.

Davies removed a further wicket in a good spell of 3 for 15, but Thomas Cogbill (43no) and Luke Humphries (18) saw Bridgend safely home without further trouble inside 24 overs.

Next week, Ammanford welcome second placed Swansea to the Park, the memory of their 700+ run clash at St Helen’s still fresh in their minds.

Thirds beat Pontardawe by a single run

Ammanford thirds beat Pontardawe by a single run in a rain adjusted match at the Rec.

Batting first, Ammanford reached 132 all out, thanks mainly to their captain Carl Griffiths (41) and Dafydd Wyn Jones (21).

Rain meant that Pontardawe’s reply was restricted to just 16 overs, during which they had to score 53 runs.

They came very close, but two wickets each from Oliver Pallot and Iwan Matthews interrupted their progress and they fell short by a single run, finishing on 51 for 5.

The victory moved Ammanford into the top half of SWCA’s Division 6.

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