Sports School keep SPH Schools Relay overall title

Yesterday's victory was Singapore Sports School's eighth overall title in nine years.
Yesterday's victory was Singapore Sports School's eighth overall title in nine years.ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA

The Singapore Sports School (SSP) retained their SPH Schools Relay Championships overall crown at the Bishan Stadium yesterday.

They topped the standings at the two-day meet with 120 points, finishing ahead of Raffles Institution (RI) on 109.

Nanyang Girls' High and Dunman High shared third place after both schools finished with 59 points.

It was SSP's eighth overall title in nine years. They had regained the championship crown last year after RI snapped their six-year winning streak in 2017.

Pedro Acuna, the SSP's head coach for track and field, singled out the school's C Division relay teams for praise.

Said the Chilean: "I am happy for the team as the students worked very hard for (the win), and this is a good lead-up to the National Schools Championships (next month).

"I'm pleased with the C Division teams in general, as many of the athletes were taking part in the SPH Schools Relay for the first time, but rose to the occasion and performed well."

SSP's C Division teams contributed 63 points to their school's overall score, while their B and A Division teams picked up 45 and 12 points respectively.

Their C boys' and girls' teams triumphed in the 4x100m, 4x400m and 4x800m relays, while the boys' 4x200m team also won gold.

Only CHIJ St Nicholas Girls' School's narrow win in the 4x200m race - they finished 0.08sec ahead second-placed SSP - prevented a clean sweep in the C Division.

No meet records were set over the two days, but the SSP's C girls 4x800m quartet came closest on Saturday. They clocked 10min 39.93sec, less than half a second shy of the 10-year-old record (10:39.50) set by CHIJ Toa Payoh Secondary School.

Clifton Dragon, SSP's assistant director of sports, said: "We are happy. This competition is part of our plans to help the student-athletes in their athlete development, and is a great way to foster teamwork and team spirit."

Now into its 27th year, the 2019 SPH Schools Relay Championships featured a total of 32 schools.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 25, 2019, with the headline 'Sports School keep SPH Schools Relay overall title'. Print Edition | Subscribe