City battle heat as race is on to seal Southern League safety

Adam Akehurst. Picture: Allan Hutchings
Adam Akehurst. Picture: Allan Hutchings
Have your say

A big effort from City of Portsmouth saw them remain in contention for Southern League division one safety.

The club are battling to avoid dropping down a level and finished third in Saturday’s meeting in London.

They had to dig in with the hot conditions having a major impact on the day.

Adam Akehurst suffered heat stroke on the journey up to the capital.

After treatment on the side of the road he made it to the venue and amazingly still managed to throw a new personal best in the javelin.

Meanwhile, Dan Cleal also suffered with illness while he was preparing for the hurdles.

That ruled him out of triple jump action.

As a result, City chairman Phil Budd stepped in – triple jumping for the first time in more than 40 years – to pick up a valuable point as the team secured third place from the meeting.

He played down his moment but felt it was good for team morale.

Budd said: ‘I seem to have lost seven metres in 40 years.

‘I wouldn’t say it was a comeback but it gave everyone a laugh.

‘It was disappointing to finish third in the meeting but we were very well supported – especially by the youngsters.’

City have one more match to go and will be looking to escape the threat of relegation.

Budd added: ‘It will be tricky but everyone will rally round.

‘We have got to perform exceptionally well in the last match.’

City travel to Exeter today for their latest British Athletics League national division four match.

Last Sunday, City youngsters dominated their home Wessex Youth Athletes League match at the Mountbatten Centre.

The hosts won the match by more than 200 points.

Meanwhile, Havant won their Southern League division three south west home match at the Mountbatten Centre on Saturday.

Don’t miss today’s Sports Mail for a report and pictures from the event.