Weekend News Report - 1st/2nd June 2019

Murphy Wins Southern 800 Metres Title Whilst Ebbage Sets New Mark

Ben Murphy won his first significant title when he captured the South of England 800 metres Championship, at Bedford on Sunday. The 21 year-old, Kent University graduate, has started the track season in fine form, having clocked 1.50.67, at Watford, recently and had been confident of challenging for a medal.

Murphy progressed comfortably through his heat, on Saturday, winning in 1.56.26, before facing the eight-man field for Sunday's final. Starting strongly, he then relinquished the lead at the bell, before surging away, over the final, 200 meres to win in 1.52.74.

Kirsty-Anne Ebbage produced the other medal winning performance for the club, at the championships, as she took home the bronze medal from the under 20 women's hammer throw. Ebbage threw 40.99m, to set a new personal best and become the first Tonbridge female to throw over the forty-metre mark, thereby beating the previous club record, held by Jenny Stevens. Ebbage also took 4th place, in the under 20 women's Shot Putt, with 9.74m and finished 6th in the Discus with 36.30m.

Lewis Collins and Asha Root just missed out on winning medals in their 400 metres events. Collins was 4th in the senior men's championship, recording 48.29, his second fastest ever time, whilst Root was 4th in the under 20 women's final with 56.64, also her second fastest time ever. Alasdair Kinloch placed 5th in the men's 5000 metres in 15.18.23.

On Friday evening, Tonbridge AC hosted the third match of the Southern Counties Veterans League, where the club's men's and women's squads won their matches, both after close contests with Dartford.

In the over 35 age group there were wins for Mark McAllister (100m, 12.0), Liz Weeks (1500m, 5.12.4, Nina Ridge (Shot Put 8.01m) and the women's 4x100m relay team in 57.3. Angie Crush came second in the Pole Vault setting a new club record with a height of 2.25m. In the over 50s victories went to Andy Howey (1500m, 4.40.3), Ian Crawley (Shot Put, 10.13m) and Lucy Pitcairn-Knowles (1500m, 5.54.0), whilst Nicky Buckwell dominated the over 60 age group with wins in the 100m (16.5), Shot Putt (7.14m) and Hammer (17.21m).

Completing a busy weekend Tonbridge also hosted the Kent Young Athletes League on Sunday, where the under 13 and 15 squad finished second overall of the eight clubs, behind Blackheath. There were plenty of wins, for the home club, with maybe the highlight being Albert Kreuzberg winning the under 13 boy's 75m hurdles in 12.1, to set a new Tonbridge age group record and top the current UK rankings.  Other wins, with National Grade One performances, came from Lily Slack (u13 800m, 2.22.0), Lucinda White (u15 Javelin, 39.07m) and Caitlin Ebbage (u15 Shot Putt, 10.90m). Slack's time set a new league record.

Amongst other performances over the past week, there were wins for George Duggan at Loughborough, over 1500m in 3.50.13 and Nicole Taylor, at Brighton, over 3000m in 9.20.35. Whilst, also at Loughborough, Kieran Reilly ran a swift 1.52.88 for 800 metres.