After the success of the Welsh Schools National Track & Field Championships in Cardiff, which played a part in the Urdd's "Gemau Cymru" Sports Festival last weekend, it was the turn of school teams to make the most of their opportunity during this busy period of the season. At arguably the biggest grass roots competition for secondary schools in the summer term, the NASUWT Cymru Wales Cup & Plate Finals took place at the Penlan Arena Track up in Brecon earlier today (Wednesday 10th July).
Ar ôl llwyddiant Pencampwriaeth Cenedlaethol Trac a Maes Ysgolion Cymru yng Nghaerdydd fel rhan o Wyl Chwaraeon Gemau Cymru yr Urdd, tro timau ysgolion Cymru oedd hi i gael y cyfle. Yng nghystadleuaeth fwyaf ar gyfer ysgolion uwchradd yn ystod tymor yr haf, rownd derfynol Cwpan a Phlât NASUWT Cymru oedd hi ar drac athletau Aberhonddu yn gynharach heddiw (Dydd Mercher 10fed o Orffennaf)
The cup competition has been organised each year since 1988 while the plate final was added in 2007. A total of thirty-six schools from across the eight districts in Wales - Afan Nedd Tawe, Cardiff & Vale, Dyfed, Eryri, Glamorgan Valleys, North East Wales, Powys and South East Wales - qualified to field sixty-two teams at the final. Each district had one team in the cup competition and one team in the plate competition.
All roads for Afan Nedd Tawe, Cardiff & Vale, Dyfed, Eryri, Glamorgan Valleys, North East Wales, Powys and South East Wales District Schools lead to Brecon
It was split into two sets of age groups - the under 14's for year 7 & 8 pupils and the under 16's for year 9 & 10 pupils. Rather than an individual competition, this was more of a complete team effort this time round with each discipline on the track and field counting to determine who came out on top.
The sprint hurdles started the action at 12 midday and team scores were announced 5 hours later when all events had been calculated and recorded. Other disciplines to take place were 1500m, 200m, 300m, 100m, 800m, 4 x 100m Relay, Long Jump, Triple Jump, High Jump, Shot, Discus and Javelin.
Geraint Davies, representative for NASUWT Cymru said: "As the largest teachers union in Wales, the NASUWT is proud of its long standing connection with the NASUWT Cup."
"Over the years, the competition has given thousands of youngsters from schools across Wales the opportunity to perform at the highest possible level and as an union, we are delighted that our support has contributed to making that possible."
All team captains gathered outside the pavilion following the conclusion of the final relays all eager to find out how their school team got on team wise.
The winning team in each of the four sections of the Cup Final and the winning team in each of the four sections of the Plate Final were awarded with the victory shield which was a new prize for the respective school winners. A separate Charlie Hughes Trophy is also up for grabs in the event which goes to the best overall School Team performance on the day and this headed back to the Welsh Capital for the third year in succession. Ysgol Gyfun Glantaf, Cardiff won three out of the eight age groups on offer and as a result, retained the trophy in 2019. All the awards were presented by Gerald Davies, Vice-Chair of Welsh Schools Athletics Association.
It turned out to be a great day of junior athletics up in Mid Wales on another relatively warm and dry day with conditions ideal to produce good performances and times. With team scores close throughout the day, every single point was important in every position with more than half of the competitions coming down to the very last relay event where everything changed.
Fantastic efforts by the six Dyfed Schools representing the District following Haverfordwest success
Six schools from the Dyfed district won/came second in their respective age groups in the District's final last month at Haverfordwest High School (Wednesday 19th June) and travelled to Brecon looking to compete with the best in the country in a competition with International athletes out on show. All schools excelled and produced great team efforts, with numerous event wins and top placing finishes in one of Welsh Schools' biggest competitions in the summer term.
A performance to note in particular is from Morgan Batten (Dyffryn Taf) who threw a new championship best performance of 48.02m in the U16 boys javelin competition. Da iawn! Round-Up listed below:
UNDER 14 GIRLS CUP / CWPAN MERCHED O DAN 14:
Ysgol Y Preseli (second with 75 points): Team - Megan Cole, Mali Murray, Marged Harries, Lucy Wintle, Ffion Ouseley, Lleucu Lloyd, Elen Hill, Storm Evans
UNDER 14 GIRLS PLATE / PLAT MERCHED O DAN 14:
Ysgol Coedcae (second with 66 points): Team - Courtney Brown, Aleah Williams, Chloe Simmonite, Elouise Bishop, Charlotte Powell, Hannah Forkuoh, Bethan Gorvin, Kieva Rees, Jessica Parker
UNDER 16 GIRLS CUP / CWPAN MERCHED O DAN 16:
Haverfordwest High School (fourth with 60 points): Team - Cerys Evans, Lucy Jenkins, Nia Roberts, Meg Thomson, Amy White, Seren James, Lucy Thomas, Ffion Scriven, Jessica Raymond, Carys Jones
UNDER 16 GIRLS PLATE / PLAT MERCHED O DAN 16:
Queen Elizabeth High School (second with 69 points): Team - Lara Simpson, Bethany Davies, Ellie Loweth, Amber McIsaac, Anna Heath, Sadie-May Mason, Ninah Guevarra, Cari Jones, Amy Hughes, Abbie Thomas
UNDER 14 BOYS CUP / CWPAN BECHGYN O DAN 14:
Ysgol Aberaeron (fourth with 56 points): Team - Harry Bromley, Taylor Richardson, Josh Tudball, Rhys Jenkins, Finlay Tarling, Jenson Lloyd, Gruff Crimes, Finley Nicholson, Ifan Rishko
UNDER 14 BOYS PLATE / PLAT BECHGYN O DAN 14:
Queen Elizabeth School (fourth with 54.5 points): Team - Seb Dabrowski, Tarike Bowen, Connor Morgan, Jack Thomas, Rory Gravelle, Josh Cabigon, Callum Tacaderas, Lewys Thomas, Oliver Hawke
UNDER 16 BOYS CUP / CWPAN BECHGYN O DAN 16:
Queen Elizabeth High School (seventh with 41 points): Team - Alfie Montgomery, Oliver Williams, Matthew Williams, Ryan Bassett, Arnav Patil, Josh Hunter Dodds, Lewis Crimble, Connor Thomas, Ben Harris Price, Iestyn Jones, Zac Mistry
UNDER 16 BOYS PLATE / PLAT BECHGYN O DAN 16:
Ysgol Dyffryn Taf (second with 61 points): Team - Matthew Miles, Harry Davies, Morgan Batten, Jake Thomas, Iestyn Comey, Harry Fuller, Joe Bohane, Lucca Setaro, Tom Monk, Finn Bell
Congratulations to all the cup & plate champions in their respective age groups as well as everyone who took part in Mid Wales as a whole. You all made for a great day's competition!
Many thanks to everyone involved on Wednesday - the Welsh Athletics Officials & Staff along with every School Teachers who supported the qualified judges on officiating duties. We also cannot forget all the Welsh Schools Officers who continue to support the WSAA competitions.