School Sport: Victory for Newham in Panathlon final
PUBLISHED: 10:57 19 March 2015 | UPDATED: 12:55 19 March 2015
Andrew Fosker 2015
Borough qualify for London championships
Pupils from Langdon Academy and Rokeby, Eastlea Community and St. Angela’s Urshuline Schools helped Newham win the plate competition at the Panathlon East London Final.
The event for disabled schoolchildren consisted of six events with the borough coming out on top in table cricket, polybat, kurling and field athletics.
Newham combined those results a second place in boccia and fourth place in relay athletics to finish top of a table containing Havering, Waltham Forest and Tower Hamlets.
The result also means the team will now compete at the London finals which take place at the Copper Box later this year.
Eastlea pupil Rebecca Cavanagh represented Newham in the event and is delighted she finished in a winning team.
“It feels brilliant, I’m glad we won. It feels like all the hard work has paid off and I’m just proud of the whole team in general,” said Cavanagh.
“I’m so excited to be going to the Copper Box. It’s a big honour. When I get older I want to be in the Paralympics.
“It feels like I’m one step closer to that dream. I’ll be training hard between now and the final.”
Cavanagh says she also thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere at the event.
“My favourite things about Panathlon are meeting new people and being able to take part in the thing that I love which is wheelchair racing,” she added.
“It’s important to me because I don’t get out a lot, so meeting new people is a breath of fresh air.
“Panathlon gets me out of my comfort zone in a way and it helps me push boundaries that I never thought I could. Not just in sport, but socially as well. It just makes me feel happy really.”
Langdon School inclusiion team leader Beverly Shillingford praised the team’s achievement of reaching the finals at the Copper Box.
“The kids have earned it. They’ve worked really hard and they deserve it. It’s a fantastic feeling. A great sense of achievement,” said Shillingford.
“It will be fantastic for them to get a chance to compete at an Olympic and Paralympic venue. It’s great for the kids and it’s great for Newham.”