Athletics: Shortstaffed Ilford dig deep in Southern League

PUBLISHED: 14:00 19 July 2018

Sam Malekout and the six Ilford women at the Southern League in Luton

Sam Malekout and the six Ilford women at the Southern League in Luton


Ilford’s small squad showed their fighting spirit at the latest Southern League fixture at Luton.

They were up against three teams who were sitting in the top six and Ilford had only six female athletes available.

But they all dug deep to fill gaps for the good of the cause, with Krystle Balogun second in the B 100m in 13.4 seconds before winning the 200m in a time just outside her best.

Balogun was first in the B 400m in 59.7, then finished fourth in the shot put.

Efe Autinz was second in the 100m and ran a best of 27.7 to win the B 200m.

Gemima Eshimu Massamba broke the 60-second mark to win the 400m in 59.7, as Ayshah Lawrence ran a new best of 29.1 in the 200m and was fourth in the B shot.

Lawrence, Massamba, Autinz and Balogun combined to finish second in the 4x100m relay.

There was a very good third place for Jordan Hinds in the 800m in 2.24.8, before she took second in the B 1500m in 5.29.4, helping Zuzana Sinalova claim second in the A string in a best of 5.27.5.

For the men, Dan Wheeler cleared 1.73m for second in the high jump, defying a recent ankle injury, and took third in the 100m in 11.6.

Wheeler was third in the 200m in 23.5 and fifth in the discus with a best of 18.85, as Jordan Akinpelu won the B high jump with a best of 1.43.

Akinpelu’s 6.16 in the long jump was two centimetres off his best, but won the B triple jump with 11.32 and the B 200m in 23.7.

Anthony George was also busy, finished second in the triple jump (11.80) and long jump (5.20), while running a best of 11.7 for third in the 100m.

There was a 3000m double for Alex Richards and Tom Gardner, with Richards also winning the 800m in 1.59.4 and taking second in the B 400m in 53.6.

Pete Whiting racked up points, with second in the B pole vault, fifth in the B shot, A hammer and B javelin, and fellow veteran Sam Malekout also kept himself busy.

Malekout was first in the 400m hurdles, second in the 400m, third in the A pole vault and javelin, fifth in the A shot and discus and fifth in the B hammer as Ilford finished fourth overall.

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