England Indoor Combined Events championships
Sheffield, 11th/12th March 2017
Matt Chandler was on superb form as he took a fine bronze at the England indoor combined events championships. The 16 year old Central AC athlete from Balfron was taking on the best all round athletes from throughout the UK as he took part in the under 17 mens Heptathlon event.
Matt started well equalling his personal best in the 60m with 7.55s for 9th overall. He followed this with a 6.18m long jump to lift himself to 6th place. A personal best in the shot of 10.58m was not enough to prevent him slipping to 9th but with stronger events to come Matt was in confident mood. He rounded of the first day with an excellent 1.85m high jump, the 3rd highest of the day, to equal his personal best and finish the first day in 7th place. He was just 120 points away from the top 3 though so there was everything to play for in day 2.
He started day 2 in the 60m hurdles running 8.66s for the 5th quickest time to climb to 6th place but it was in the pole vault Matt was looking to move himself up the field as one of the highest ranked athletes. Matt went clear at every height up to 3.71m where he was one of only 2 athletes left in the competition. He was unable to improve on his club record 3.85m set earlier in the season as 3.81m proved beyond him on this occasion but his 3.71m clearance and 2nd place in the pole vault had moved Matt up to 3rd place and a medal position. In fact it was 3 Scots who occupied the top 3 spots with Matt trailing only Joel MacFarlane of Arbroath and Robbie Farquhar of Aberdeen. Joel was over 300 points ahead and uncatchable but Robbie was just 41 points ahead giving Matt a chance of moving up another place in the final 1000m event. In the 1000m Matt ran hard setting a new personal best 2:58.80 minutes but Robbie did just enough to stay ahead finishing 3 seconds behind.
Matt was still in bronze medal position though completing a Scottish 1-2-3 as he finished 80 points ahead of the leading English athlete with a new personal best score 4551 points. This was a huge personal best for Matt. Prior to this event only 2 Scots had ever scored higher, including Matt’s older brother Tom, whose Central AC club record Matt missed by only 60 points. This result also bodes well for the schools international later in the year where Scotland will have a great chance of a team win.