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  • Writer's pictureDanielle McGifford

YDL Upper Match 3 – 30th June 2024 @Robin Park Arena

Premier League Bound: Wigan Harriers Enter Top Tier for the First Time Since 2016 league restructure

On a dull and drizzly day, and entering our final league match in 5th position, little did any of us know how the day would pan out…………and we couldn’t have imagined a better outcome!! It was a day all about team spirit and we brought it in bucket loads!


U20 Men

It was Ethan Roberts who took on the sprints, in a category where we were very thin on the ground for athletes. Placing second and third in the 100 and 200m, Ethan achieved PBs in both (11.3s, 23.2s).

Although struggling for U20 athletes, our jumpers remained strong as they have throughout the league matches. Will Jackson took the win in the long, high and triple jump (6.57m, 1.90m,

12.26m), whilst George MacKenzie won the high jump B (1.60m). George also won the pole vault with 3.35m.

In the throws it was a Wigan debut for Alex Houghton, placing third in discus (16.33m), fourth in javelin (23.38m) and first in the B shot (6.04m). George MacKenzie (somewhat out of his comfort zone) came second in the shot A (8.37m). Brilliant work everyone!


4x100m Men – George MacKenzie, Ethan Roberts, Sami Manir-Jolley, Matthew Hayton – 3rd – 47.4

4x400m (M&W) – Ethan Roberts, Owen Baron, Kady Hall, Isobel Dyson – 1st – 03.55.9

U20 Women

Our U20 women category was largely filled with our U17 athletes as this is again a category where we have struggled for athletes.

In the sprints, it was third and fourth places for Holly Capstick (A - 12.9s) and Olivia Berry (B - 14.0s) in the 100m, whilst in the 200m it was fourth and second for Isobel Dyson (A - 26.6s) and Holly (B - 26.6s). Lucy Stretton ran a PB for second in the 400m (69.5s).

Nour Kholeif ran 2.40 for fourth in the 800m, whilst in true fighting spirit, Chloe Budworth took on the perils of the 1500m steeplechase, finishing in 08.59 for the win and discovering that it is an event where you get very wet and have to run very far! Well done Chloe #onefortheteam.

In the jumps, Lucy Stretton took fourth in the long jump (4.19m), with Jess Taggart winning the triple jump (9.10m). Florence Bardon (U20) won the pole vault A, close to her PB with 2.15m, whilst Eleanor Hopper (U20) unfortunately no heighted in the high jump and pole vault competitions whilst battling the elements.

Eleanor did however secure third in the javelin with 15.75m, and to conclude the throws, Yasmin Baker won the discus (24.82m) and Amy Hewitt, returning from her ligament injury, came third in the 4k shot (7.40m).


4x100m – Olivia Berry, Chloe Budworth, Halle Walsh, Grace Winrow – 2nd - 53.7

U17 Men

In the sprints, Matty Hayton and Zain Elfarmawy took on the 100m and 200m finishing in fourth (12.0s) and fifth (25.3s) respectively. In the 400m, it was Owen Baron taking fourth (A – 53.6s), with Zain winning the B race in 56.9s. Owen also won the 400m hurdles in an impressive 59.4s, whilst “embracing the darkness” – motivational input from his dad Rob.

Over in the jumps, Reuben Goulding made his Wigan debut finishing fourth in the triple jump with 8.79m. It was then Owen again, but this time in the high jump, taking the win with 1.70m.

Finally, it was Phoenix Oliver who picked up the points in the throws, taking on the shot (fourth, 7.35m), discus (fifth, 13.82m) and javelin (fifth, 14.96m). Well done Phoenix following your gradual return from injury.


4x400m Men – Matthew Hayton, John Hassan, Reuben Goulding, Sami Manir-Jolley – 2nd – 03.54.7

U17 Women

In the sprints, it was Emma Pimblett (Pim-Bullet) taking third in the 100m A (12.8s) with Grace Winrow second in the B race (13.7s). Emma then came second in the 200m A (25.9s), with Grace winning the B (28.4s). Our 300m sprinter Isobel Dyson came second in the A race (42.9s) with Kady Hall winning the B (44.4s).

In the sprint hurdles (80m), it was Aimee Glenn and Jess Taggart placing in fifth (13.8s) and second B (13.9s) respectively, with Lucy Stretton coming second in the 300mh (54.5) and Jess running a PB as the B (55.3s) for the win.

There were more PBs as Esme Harris ran an 800m PB for second place A (02.39.2), with Esme Clark also finishing in second as the B runner (02.51.7). Katie Bonner looked strong in the 1500m for the win (05.28.9), as did Esme Harris who won the 1500m steeplechase in 06.32.5. Aimee Glenn won the steeplechase B race in 08.53.4, out of her comfort zone and picking up the team points. “Keep going Aimee”…………..”I AM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” Well done!

Valuable points were picked up across the jumps, with Halle Walsh second in the long jump (4.53m), Chloe Budworth winning the B (4.23m). Emma Pimblett won the triple jump (10.72m), with Halle equalling her PB in the B (9.87m). Then Kady won the high jump (1.43m) with Aimee Glenn third in the B (1.25m). In the pole vault, Claudia Berry unfortunately didn’t secure a height on this occasion.

Finally in the throws, Yasmin Baker and Christina Stewart (making her Wigan debut), took on the shot and javelin. Yas took second in the shot (12.76m) and third in the javelin (23.99m) as the A thrower, with Christina taking third in the shot B (6.93m) and second in the javelin B (20.28m). Amy Hewitt made her discus debut and was “very proud” of her 15.71m throw for fourth place A “English Schools here I come,” whilst Chloe Budworth threw a PB (11.75m) as the B.


4x100m – Isobel Dyson, Jessica Taggart, Aimee Glenn, Emma Pimblett – 2nd – 52.9

4x300m – Nour Kholeif, Katie Bonner, Olivia Berry, Lucy Stretton – 2nd – 03.12.8

The atmosphere in the stand was out of this world, we literally blew the roof off! I think everyone would agree that the relay races were the most exciting we have ever seen. We are massively proud of the whole team, many of whom competed in events completely out of their comfort zone and those who did what they could whilst returning from injuries.

Wigan have now been promoted to the top division for the first time in a decade! And into the premier league for the very first time since the league restructure back in 2016. This means that you are all part of a historic moment for the club so be very proud of yourselves athletes, coaches, parents and absolutely everyone who helped and supported us along the way. Let’s start to build an even stronger army now for next year to put our marker down in the premier league.

If there is anyone influential who can do us a deal on an open top bus, that would be great. We hope to celebrate in style – nothing too over the top or anything. Just a victory tour of the town.

Keep believing Team Wigan. We’ve got this.

John Hewitt – YDL Team Manager

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