Surrey League final, Lloyd Park: Bels cement comfortable top flight survival

Surrey League final, Lloyd Park: Bels cement comfortable top flight survival

Belgrave’s men secured Division 1 status for another year with a solid performance in the fourth and final fixture of the Surrey League cross country season.

With mounting injuries and illnesses to big players, an impressive 15 men still turned up in the claret and gold to get us across the line, with ever-presents Paskar and Andrius leading us home.

A brave run from Phil Wicks, returning from a lengthy calf struggle, scored us valuable points at a boggy Lloyd Park in Croydon.

Belgrave finishers

Belgrave finisherOverall scoreNameTime
110Paskar Owor27:15
212Andrius Jaksevicius27:19
314Phil Wicks27:25
450Nick Buckle29:16
563Steve Gardner30:29
668Edward Auden30:49
776Alex Mills31:36
877Patrick Mcdougall31:39
978Ben Hurley31:40
1086Will Cockerell32:45
1149James Morris34:19
1252Joseph O’Clery34:32
1366Timin Kamani36:09
1474Frank Ward (2C)37:17
1575Yordan Mehandzhiyski38:45
l-r: Charlie Dickinson, Joseph O’Clery, Alan Black, Frank Ward, Patrick McDougall, Nick Buckle, Alex Mills, Steve Gardner, Ben Hurley, James Morris, Yordan Mehandzhiyski, the tip of Paskar Owor, Will Cockerell, Phil Wicks, Timin Kanani.

The sum total was a comfortable league survival ahead of Ranelagh and relegated Striders of Croydon.

Final team standings after four fixtures

1Hercules Wimbledon700
3Thames Hare and Hounds1251
4Guildford and Godalming1805
5Herne Hill Harriers1890
6South Loundon Harriers1972
8Ranelagh Harriers2399
9Striders of Croydon3301
Phil Wicks made a welcome return. Photo: Chris de Mauny

Team manager’s verdict

Cockers muses:

Yes, that’s a pretty good turn-out considering I compared us to Apocalypse Now on Thursday night. “The horror, the horror”, I wailed in my best Marlon Brando voice.

But the nuggety Ed and Nick said they’d crawl from their sickbeds and feel their way around [they did a lot more than that], and it was a deelish surprise to get Wicksy out, and although his calf tightened badly on the second lap, he doesn’t feel that too much damage has been done.

With Steve getting fitter all the time and the epic Mcdougall/Mills rivalry continuing apace, this time joined by Ben; and the Cockerpillar scoring 10th for us at the start of the millennium and again 19 years later, we can feel satisfied there’s a lot more to come from this hard-bitten squad.

Timin is a fine prospect but is going out far too quickly in these races, for a distance and quality he’s simply not used to. But it’s a nice problem to have, reigning in such a talent, whilst Joseph was more clinical. We have huge hopes for both athletes in the coming 35-odd years…

It won’t be long before James starts scoring for us as he too gets better each time out. Finally a welcome to Yordan and cheers to Frank for running in memory of Bill. Frank first troubled the scorers for us in 1982. There’s absolutely no reason why we can’t gobble up the three clubs just ahead of us next season – and who knows about the other 3! – the wheel doth turn.

Will Cockerell, men’s TM

Paskar is league’s second best overall performer

Club legend Paskar Owor’s 10th place means he finishes second individual performer over all four Surrey League races.

Owen HindKEN14[6, 2, 4, 2]
Paskar Owor (V35)BEL34[4, 15, 5, 10]
Jim AllchinTHH36[12, 7, 9, 8]
Colin HighG&G46[20, 10, 11, 5]
Finn JohnsonH/W53[10, 5, 18, 20]