Promotion still on track for City

Karrie Blake will return for City of Portsmouth in Bedford
Karrie Blake will return for City of Portsmouth in Bedford
Rob Arkell (3rd), Rob Greenwood (1st) and Ollie Caudwell (2nd). Picture: Duncan Shepherd

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City of Portsmouth Ladies go into their final UK League meeting of the season today, with promotion still a possibility.

Bronwin Carter’s chargers have proven no pushovers in their new surroundings of division two this season and currently sit third in the table.

Leaders Herne Hill Harriers and second-placed Crawley AC will start the day as favourites to make the step up to division one.

However, a good showing at the Bedford International Stadium could see the Mountbatten Centre-based outfit book their place in the promotion party and enhance their growing reputation even further.

That thought will be on the athletes’ minds, but all Carter is hoping for is another solid performance from her team.

‘We don’t know how strong a team Herne Hill are going to field and, if they continue to perform as they have been, then talk of promotion will be premature,’ said Carter. ‘But we’ve got a good team and we’re ready to rock and roll.’

City’s ranks are boosted by the timely returns of middle-distance runners Karrie Blake and Cassie Thorp – along with 400m hurdler Mandy Gault, who recently competed at the UK Olympic Trials in Birmingham with team-mate Katy Watts.

Their returns will aid Portsmouth’s bid for glory, leaving Carter excited by events that lie ahead.

She added: ‘It’s all looking good on paper and having been at the Bedford International Stadium many times before, I can say that it’s really nice and a pleasure to compete in.’

If Portsmouth pull off their bid promotion, Carter – who carried the Olympic Torch through the streets of Portsmouth as part of the relay – has a very special celebration in mind.

‘If we do well, we’ll all be able to have a celebration,’ she said. ‘Hopefully, I’ll be able to get the torch out and we can have a relay of our own.’