Bunmi takes the gold

PUBLISHED: 10:39 13 April 2006 | UPDATED: 09:58 06 May 2010

Stevenage and North Herts AC had an unexpected winner at the national sportshall finals in Birmingham. Bunmi Awokoya was representing Hertfordshire in the Norwich Union sponsored under-15 girls event at the National Indoor Arena on Sunday. She performed

Stevenage and North Herts AC had an unexpected winner at the national sportshall finals in Birmingham.

Bunmi Awokoya was representing Hertfordshire in the Norwich Union sponsored under-15 girls' event at the National Indoor Arena on Sunday.

She performed brilliantly in her three events to share first place with one of the favourites for the title, Jade Ellans from Avon.

The medals were presented by the Commonwealth Games heptathlon gold medallist Kelly Sotherton, who started her athletic career in sportshall competitions for the Isle of Wight.

Each competitor does three events and their places in each event collect points which are added up to find the overall individual winner.

Bunmi, who goes to Hitchin Girls' School, was second in the shot (10.94m), sixth in the four-lap race (48.1) and fourth in the vertical jump (62cm). She amassed 282 points in the process.

The joint winner said: "I'm really surprised to win but I had a great day. It has been really good fun. I would encourage anyone to get involved in the sportshall athletics. More people should do it; it's such a good experience."

Herts team manager Bob Johnson added: "Bunmi really came up trumps; she is a real talent and doesn't always believe in her ability."

Sotherton, a former winner of the Norwich Union sportshall title and ambassador for the scheme, said: "I won the all-rounder title 15 years ago.

"It is a great experience for young athletes and gives them a taste for competitive athletics. I'm sure we will have seen some future champions here.

"Bunmi gave a really fantastic performance, so congratulations to her."

The Herts team also performed well too, finishing just one point behind Surrey in the competition of 13 county team finalists.

Also in the team was Rachel Williams who collected 113 points.

Connor Winter was in the boys' under-13 team and he jumped 1.30m in his high jump event.

* A Stevenage teenager also won a bronze for his club Herts Phoenix.

Nick McNaught, a 13-year-old who goes to Heathcote School, was third in the under-13 boys' event.

Nick is already 800m record holder for Herts Phoenix AC at under-13 level and is also the Hertfordshire under-13 boys' county champion at pentathlon.


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