England Athletics sent an eight strong team of development jumpers to the annual Hustopeče Skakani International high jump meeting in the Czech Republic.
First up in the 13 hour day of competitions were the U18 and U20 women with three English women in the U20 event. This turned out to be a great start to the day with England filling the podium. Halle Ferguson (coach: Andrew Wood; club: Trafford AC) took first place at 1m74 beating England debutee Gabriella Garber (Jess Taylor-Emmett, Leeds City AC) on count back with first year junior Gracie Wall (Barry Johnson, Bedford and County AC) picking up the bronze medal.
The second competition of the day saw Ethan Glyde (AC Cannes & City of Plymouth) rise to occasion in his first international with an excellent personal best of 2m08 before narrowly missing the meeting record held by England’s Sam Brereton. Ethan’s 2m 08 winning height was his second performance above the Commonwealth Youth Games consideration standard.
Luke Ball (Jeremy Dale, Yate and District AC) took silver in the U20 competition with a solid 2m08 and looks good to get back above his 2022 PB of 2m12 which is the UK standard for this year's European Juniors Championships.
In the seventeen-strong men’s ‘B’ competition U23 Divine Duruaku (Adam Gallie, Harrow AC) posted a season's best of 2m12 for second place. In the same competition, senior Adam Brooks (Jeremy Dale, Yate and District AC) cleared 2m12 for fifth coming close at 2m17 despite suffering some back issues after an awkward landing at the start of the competition.
Kate Anson (Duncan Mathieson/Matt Lee, Liverpool Harriers) who has struggled with some serious injuries over the last few years jumped brilliantly to take the women’s ‘B’ completion with a new PB of 1m84 before agonisingly tickling the bar with her heels at 1m86.
Team coaches Deirdre Elmhirst and Paul Harrison and physio Lucy Eggleton provided great support to both the athletes and the personal coaches who made the journey out to Hustopeče.
There was a fantastic end to a day of superb high jumping when the UK’s Morgan Lake (Fuzz Caan, Windsor Slough Eton & Hounslow) first equalled her best of 1m97 in the elite women’s event before squeezing over a bar set at 1m99 to take the win with a lifetime best and new British senior record.
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