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British Athletic League (National Division 1)

Round: 4

Date: Sunday 20 August 2017

Venue: Sportscity, Rowsley Street, Manchester M11 3FF

Venue Telephone: 0161 220 3800

Venue Website: http://www.runtrackdir.com/details.asp?track=manchester-sc

Host: Sale Harriers Manchester http://www.saleharriersmanchester.com/

Organiser: British Athletics League http://www1.bal.org.uk/

Competing Teams: Cardiff AAC; Sale H Manchester; Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow AC; Blackheath & Bromley H; Glasgow City H; Harrow AC; Basingstoke & Mid Hants AC; Swansea H & AC.

First Event at: 12.30

Last Event at: 17.25

Match Report

Heading into the final round of the British Athletics League series with a three point margin over second placed Swansea, Cardiff's senior men wanted to finish with a flourish in Manchester's Sportcity yesterday. With home team Sale fighting to get back into the top flight (they needed to win with a two place advantage over Swansea), the result was in doubt until the final relays.

In the event, Cardiff beat Sale by a mere 9 points to do their Welsh rivals a favour by pushing Sale into second with Swansea third.


Mid-way through the day a big gap had opened up between the top two and the rest and Swansea had slipped to fifth place and had all but given up hope of a place in the premiership. A late rally saw them climb to third on the day and secure their place by one half of a league point.

For the first time ever, therefore, both Cardiff and Swansea will be in the premier division of British club athletics and hopefully will be fully supported by Welsh Athletics.

Cardff's team performance and team spirit was outstanding and they fully deserved the win; which was rounded off by a tremendous last leg by Paul Bennett to clinch a win in the 4x400m relay. Team captain Brett Morse, leading by example, said it was one of his proudest days in a Cardiff vest. Some of the middle distance runners had even competed in BMC races the previous day.

Every point counted, whether by Cardiff's traditional heavy points scorers or by those competing in a Cardiff vest for the first time.

The premiership will represent a step up in quality, but Cardiff can thrive and do well and, with the support of all its athletes, be a force to be reckoned with. We have the talent and the numbers and it is interesting to note that, over the four matches of this year's campaign, no fewer than 43 athletes have been called up to represent the club.

Athletes of the match were Ryan Grimwade (field events) and Joe Reid (track). Athletes of the season (points scored) were Paul Bennett and Jonathan Edwards.

It is also a great tribute to Andrew Seary who stepped into the breach when we needed a team manager two years ago and has steered the team to two successive promotion campaigns.

The final team scores yesterday were:

1. Cardiff AAC (363 match points)
2. Sale Manchester H (354)
3. Swansea H & AC (291)
4. Harrow AC (283)
5. Windsor Slouigh Eton & Hounslow AC (277)
6. Blackheath & Bromley AC (238)
7. Glasgow City AC (173)
8. Basingstoke & Mid Hants AC (137)

The final league positions after four matches are:

1. Cardiff AAC (29 league points)
2. Swansea H & AC (24)
3. Sale Manchester H (23.5)
4. Harrow AC (22)
5. Blackheath & Bromley AC (18)
6. Windsor Slouigh Eton & Hounslow AC (14.5)
7. Glasgow City AC (8.5)
8. Basingstoke & Mid Hants AC (4.5)

The official results can be seen here.