Chichester athletes fly the flag at English schools championships

Sophie Anne Haigh, Izzie Brown and Jess Breach all represented the area at the English schools
Sophie Anne Haigh, Izzie Brown and Jess Breach all represented the area at the English schools

All three of Chichester’s athletes at the English Schools Championships at Birmingham emerged with much credit.

As part of a strong Sussex squad, the trio were up against the best athletes in the country in their respective age groups and rubbed shoulders with stars of the future.

Izzy Brown from Chichester High School was enjoying the last of an unbroken line of five championships, having come through all three age groups from junior, intermediate and senior.

She produced another solid performance to record 1.69m for fifth place in the senior girls’ high jump, just outside the medals, where the first four competitors had to be split on countback, each having cleared 1.75.

Jess Breach has been making great strides this season as a sprinter and hurdler and it was over the 80m hurdles that she made her mark at Birmingham.

A new personal best of 11.93sec was good enough for second place in her heat and a place in the semi-finals. Breach shaved off another seven 100ths in the semi to record 11.86 but was just outside the top four in fifth place to narrowly miss out on a place in the final.

The Lavant House student can be pleased with her effort and look forward to her hurdling spearheading a rapid climb up the heptathlon rankings before the end of the season.

In the juniors, Sophie-Ann Haigh was also enjoying her first experience at national level and the Bishop Luffa pupil did not disappoint.

Having achieved English schools standard at both 100m and 200m, Haigh was selected for the longer event and posted a fast 26.18 in her heat to progress to the semis.

A slightly slower 26.3 was just outside the time needed to make the final but Haigh, like the other two Chichester athletes, can be well satisfied with her performance and the experience gained from the Birmingham event will prove useful for her development.