7th July 2018


The decathlon began and two other British athletes progressed to semi-finals on a productive third morning at the European Athletics U18 Championships in Hungary.

Marcia Sey (coach: Lorna Boothe, club: Croydon Harriers) and Lucy-Jane Matthews (Andrew Fisher, Southampton) made easy work of their respective 100m hurdles heats, as they both advanced to the semi-finals later on Saturday.

Sey was first up and ran what she described as a ‘messy’ race, but she completed the task at hand by posting a time of 13.32 (+2.5) for second position, securing an automatic qualifier spot.

Sey commented: “I’m fairly happy; it was a bit of a messy race to be honest so I’ll need it to be better for the semi-final. My start wasn’t as clean as it could have been but my turnover between hurdles was good.

“I just wanted to get through – it’s quite overwhelming to be wearing the British kit. I’ve never done it before but it is a nice feeling.”

In the fourth heat, not only did Matthews win it, but she also set a lifetime best of 13.46 (+1.5) which is also a British U15 record. The Southampton athlete flew out of the blocks in lane one, and kept the pressure on throughout to lower her previous best which was 13.61.

She spoke afterwards: “It is just incredible. I am honoured to be here, so to run a PB in my first race is amazing. I’m so happy – I think it helped to be out in lane one, out of all the action, as I could block it out and get on with my race.

“I’m so excited to get the opportunity to race again tonight in the semis.”

The decathlon got underway with Ollie Thorner (Alan Richardson, Wells City Harriers) and Jack Turner (Kevin Skinner, Exeter) in action for the British team.

It started perfectly for the duo as they took advantage of a strong tailwind throughout the 100m heats. Turner ran a personal best of 11.17 (+3.4) in the fourth heat, taking 823 points while Thorner also lowered his best with a wind-assisted mark, recording 11.35 (+2.3) worth 784 points.

They both returned for the long jump with Thorner and Turner using the favourable tailwind to their advantage. Both exceeded their PBs, but both marks were wind-assisted, however, that did not concern the pair.

Turner leapt 6.99m (+4.0) in the final round to earn 811 points, while Thorner went out to 6.78m in round two to take 762 points. Those tallies combined with the 100m left them in 6th and 13th respectively on 1634 points and 1546 points.

In the final event of the first session, they returned to the field for the shot put (5kg). Turner once again produced a lifetime best, this time an effort of 13.05m, which was a remarkable improvement by 48cm. This moved him to tenth position after three events on 2304 points, 134 points off the podium places at the moment.

Thorner also threw a personal best of 11.87m on his final attempt to claim 599 points, and he completes the first three events in 19th position on 2145 points.

Full results