Welsh Schools held its’ annual Sportshall final at Cwmbran Stadium. The event is the culmination of a series of regional qualifiers held across the 8 School Districts and represents one of the largest grass roots events in Wales with many athletes who sit outside the club system. It provides a great vehicle for both talent identification and for providing young athletes with a fun, safe and exciting introduction to competitive athletics.
This year teams representing North West Wales (Eryri School District), Powys, Dyfed, Afan Nedd Tawe, Cardiff & the Vale as well as welcome returns from Glamorgan Valleys and from Caerphilly County Borough (representing South East Wales School District), all took part with only the late withdrawal of North East Wales preventing all 8 Districts being in attendance. The event features both team competitions at both Under 13 and Under 15 levels with individual competition for Under 15s (based on a points system similar to multi event competition).
It was again teams from North West Wales and Powys which dominated the event. Powys won both the boys and girls team events for Under 13s with the North West and Cardiff & the Vale picking up silver and bronze for the boys and Afan Nedd Tawe and North West medalling for the girls.
In the Under 15 match North West Wales took both team titles, Powys took silver and Cardiff & Vale the bronze for the boys with Afan Nedd Tawe and Powys taking silver and bronze for the girls.
There were close battles for the individual trophies as well, the girls’ event being won by Ellen Jones (Powys) on 139, silver went to Niamh Roberts (Dyfed) with 137 and the bronze was shared between Victoria Rejniak (Dyfed) and Anya Williams (North West) both tied on 133 points. Dyfed’s Toby Baldwin took the boys individual (148) from Zach Price (North West) on 143 and Cardiff & the Vales’ Christopher Thompson, who took bronze with 140.
The winning teams will now advance to the UK final in Manchester at the end of April, they are accompanied by the two individual winners who get the chance to contest the individual competition which runs alongside the team event.
Thanks go to Chris Moss and the Network Officers Team from Welsh Athletics as well as all the teachers, district officers and sports development staff who supported all the qualifying matches and yesterday’s final. Special thanks also go to Adam Burgess and the team from UK Sportshall for the great job they do in driving the competitions.