Absent athletes give opportunities to others
Following their part in the club's Youth Development League-winning performance, Chichester's under-13 squad completed their evening Sussex League programme at Horsham in high spirits.
Missing a few key athletes, they were not able to challenge the top two on this occasion and had to give way to strong teams from Horsham and Crawley.
But this gave an opportunity for a number of reserves to take their chance and impress the club selectors in preparation for the Sussex grand final at the beginning of September.
Other athletes took the opportunity to try different events from those in the YDL and one who made the most of this was Ollie Beach who squeezed home in a tight finish to win the 600m in a fast time of 1.42.9 and followed this with a 25m discus throw to win the competition by more than seven metres.
He was supported well by Vinnie Conte-Smith in the discus for a double win and by Oliver Sanderson for a runners-up spot in the 600m.
Sanderson had earlier scored good points with Ben Wadey in the 100m as well as posting the fastest hurdles time of the day, before Wadey teamed up with Archie Sadler in the 1000m, both runners under the 3.30 mark.
Zach Entiknapp and Fraser Lyne formed a new combination in the 150m with Lyne and Sadler in the long jump and Entiknapp in the javelin.
New Sussex No1 Conte-Smith produced another winning performance in the shot putt, with Sammy Copeland stepping in as B string after running well in the 600m.
For the girls there was a new look in the sprints with Maria Austin in fine form, setting the club’s fastest times of the year in both 75m and 150m with Millie Grant and Ruby Cousins also in action, giving Chichester’s best sprint combination of the season.
Grant followed this up with a fine shot putt of over eight metres while Cousins was runner-up in the long jump with a 4m-plus effort. Two of the mainstays of the team were also in action with Fleur Hollyer scoring good points over hurdles and long jump while Nicole Boltwood ran a sub two-minute clocking in the 600m.
Thea Agostinelli supported Boltwood in the discus and Hollyer in the hurdles and the final two places of the team were the pairing in the 1000m with Hannah Carmichael just getting the better of Rose Potter over the closing stages with the duo just either side of four minutes.
There is Chichester involvement this Sunday in the inter-counties under-13 championships at Kingston, with Beach, Conte-Smith, Sanderson and DJ Barth all proudly wearing the Sussex vest for the first time.
As for the rest of the squad, there is a month’s gap in team fixtures with all eyes on Sunday, September 4, with the Sussex final being held at Crawley involving the top ten junior clubs in Sussex.
Now in its 17th year, Chichester will be aiming to keep up their record of never having finished outside the top half of the field and may even have a chance of a top-three finish if their strongest squad is available.
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