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Olympiad is proving a hit

THE Hyndburn Olympiad has proved a hit as scores of youngsters from the borough have tested their soccer, rugby and cricket skills.

MEDAL WINNERS... St Christopher’s Girls Football team won the Year 8/9 event.
MEDAL WINNERS... St Christopher’s Girls Football team won the Year 8/9 event.

THE Hyndburn Olympiad has proved a hit as scores of youngsters from the borough have tested their soccer, rugby and cricket skills.

Around 280 girls got a real taste of International football in the largest ever girls' football event ever staged in Hyndburn thanks to Hyndburn Sport and Community Development Team.

England international Rachel Brown, a former St Christopher's pupil, and the Mayor of Hyndburn Cllr Win Frankland were on hand to present the medals at Wilson's Playing Fields.

In the primary schools event, Fiji - St Peter and St Paul's, Rishton - edged out Samoa - St Mary's, Oswaldtwistle - to win the final. Third was Sri Lanka (Huncoat).

In the secondary schools section, the Year Seven competition went to the wire between last season's champions St Christopher's - who are Kenya - and Cameroon - Mount Carmel.

Both tied with two wins and a draw but Cameroon will represent the borough in the Lancashire Youth Games in June as they had scored one more goal.

They will be joined by the Year Eight/Nine winners Kenya - St Christopher's - who retained their title to make a second trip to Lancaster. They won all their games. Cameroon - Mount Carmel - were their nearest challengers.

In the final section, Jamaica - Rhyddings - won the Year 10/11 section as they pipped Argentina - Moorhead - to the gold by a point. Kenya - St Christopher's - took bronze.

The football was played in bright sunshine in contrast to the first ever Rugby League festival which was played in rain at Highams Playing Fields.

The teams were well-prepared after receiving more than 40 hours of coaching by Accrington RLFC.

In the boys section, there was a real battle with the highly-fancied Cameroon getting off to a flyer by beating Jamaica - Rhyddings - 8-3. The Kiwi's - Norden - got through 7-6 against Argentina.

Kenya - St Christopher's - started their group strongly beating New Zealand 10-1 in their first game.

A play-off eventually decided who would be in the final with Kenya going through and they faced Cameroon who beat New Zealand.

At the end of normal time, the score was 4-4 so it went to sudden death, with Kenya winning 2-1. They took gold and sealed a place in the Lancashire Youth Games.

Chorley Lynx head coach Mark Lee presented the medals.

In the girls section, Germany - Hollins - were strong favourites to take gold and they started off well winning all their group games and scoring 12 tries along the way.

They faced Cameroon - Mount Carmel - in the final after they had finished runners-up in the group.

And the Lions got their revenge on the Germans winning 2-1 to book a ticket to the youth games.

Not to be outdone, the girls cricket festival was another big hit.

Denmark - Peel Park - will represent Team Hyndburn in the Youth Games after six wins in the tournament.

There were 16 teams taking part and 31 games had to be played to decide the overall champions.

France - Gt Harwood - were one of four unbeaten teams topping their group along with Denmark, Fiji - St Peter and St Paul's - and South Africa - West End. However, despite beating Japan in the quarter-finals, France lost out to Samoa - St Mary's.

USA - Hippings Methodists- did almost upset Denmark in the quarter-finals with a bowl out but Denmark came through and then saw off South Africa - West End - in the semi-finals.

In the final, Denmark's 264-1 was too much for Samoa.

Sri Lankan Church star Ruven Peiris gave some tips to the schools while Accrington CC's President Peter Barratt presented the medals.

Anyone who would like to know more about girls soccer, ruby or cricket contract Lee Boyer on 01254 380286.

  • ACCRINGTON Tennis club, at the end of Thorneyholme Road, are holding a "Play Tennis Day" for all the family on Sunday from 2-5pm. It is free for all abilities.


Stuart Pike
Deputy editor specialising in politics
Alex Bell
Bethany English
District reporter
Beth Abbit
Court reporter
Jon Macpherson
Kate Watkins
Reporter specialising in communities
Garth Dawson
Photographer and columnist