Future looking bright for Croydon schools' athletics scene

High times: Ocean Schwartz won the intermediate boys high jump at Saturday's Surrey School Championships

High times: Ocean Schwartz won the intermediate boys high jump at Saturday's Surrey School Championships

First published in Sport
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On the evidence of Croydon schools' athletes’ performances at Kingsmeadow on Saturday the future of the sport shines bright.

Youngsters, representing predominantly north and south Croydon teams, won 16 gold medals and set three Surrey School Championship best performances.

Croydon Harrier Damien Powell (South Surrey) turned in a scintilating time in the senior boys' 100m, clocking 10.77 seconds, wiping out Olympian James Dasaolu’s record.

The fine run shot Powell into the national U20 top 20.

A gripping intermediate boys' high jump competition saw Ocean Schwartz (south Croydon) and Mityrae Brooks (north Croydon) dominate, with Whitgift boy Schwartz finally prevailing with a clean 2.00m clearance.

Other senior titles went to Shaun Cooke (SC) in the 400m (50.15secs), and Shirin Irving 100m hurdles in 14.90secs.

Creston Harrison (NC) took the intermediate boys 200m gold (22.35secs) in a close battle with Luke Daniel (SC) (22.41secs).

Surrey Comet:

Leader: Croydon Harrier Shirin Irving won the 100m hurdles senior title, clocking 14.90secs 

Daniel Aladese (NC) won a close discus contest with a 39.59m effort.

Twins Tamara (NC) and Omar Reid (SC) made it a golden family day by comfortably taking the discus and hammer throwing titles with throws of 46.13m and 41.81m.

Sakis Navaratnam (SC) although below her best at 34.25m, was still able to take discus gold.

Dele Aladese (N) was Croydon's final senior champion with 39.89m discus victory.

South London Harrier Ton Holden (Sutton) headed his 1,500m by almost four seconds in four minutes 9.13secs, while Croydon Harrier Zoe Fossett (South Surrey) won the javelin by a 2m plus margin with her 26.66m throw.

The intermediate girls 100m saw Croydon athletes filling the first four places Imani Lansiqet (NC) was in a class of her own into the wind, with the watch stopping at a championship best mark of 11.81secs.

Ashleigh Clarke (SC) took silver at 12.45sec, Sophie Henlon (SC) 12.77sec took bronze and Coralie Mido (NC) 13.04sec completed the Croydon whitewash.

Jazz Crawford (SC) jetted to a 25.10secs 200m win, Chuks Ajeh (SC) easily won the junior boys' 100m in 11.54secs.

Surrey Comet:

Up and over: Mityrae Brooks was a runner up in the intermediate boy's high jump 

Other high-quality performances from Croydon athletes in silver and bronze medal places included Robert Sakala’s intermediate hurdles silver for North Croydon in 13.48secs, only .04sec behind the winner in a nail biting finish.

Two strong senior middle distance runs caught the eye with Croydon Harrier Patrick Lucas (Sutton) bravely taking 800m silver in 1:55.32, and club colleague Stevie Lawrence (South Surrey) displaying excellent judgement in her 1,500m to snatch the important second spot in the home straight in a personal best of 4:41.06.

The top placed athletes now have a nervous wait before learning if they have been selected for the English Schools Championships next month.

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