London Youth Games brings out Merton’s competitive edge

Merton’s youngsters saw off rival boroughs to bring home, three gold and three bronze medals at this year’s Balfour Beatty London Youth Games.

The Games held earlier this month at various locations around London, saw Merton’s youngsters take home gold in the boys’ squash and the boccia team. Jamal Petgrave from Harris Academy Merton single-handedly fought off challenges from competitors to bring home gold in judo.

Merton’s mixed badminton and the girls’ indoor cricket teams secured bronze and Craig Filby, from Rutlish held on firmly to secure a bronze in karate.

This year’s Games saw Merton climb from 31st position in last year’s league table to 28th place.

Around 700 children from Merton took part in the London Youth Games through training and competing. The council is looking for more young sporting stars to participate in next year’s games. Merton is also calling for potential team managers to volunteer their skills so that next year the borough’s youngsters can take another leap forward in the ranking. Young people and adults who think they have what it takes to be a team manager in next year’s Balfour Beatty London Youth Games should contact Merton Council on 020 8545 3663 or

For youngsters wanting to take part in 2010, entry forms will be available from January and can be collected from schools, sports clubs, leisure centres, libraries or applications can be completed online at

Merton Council’s cabinet member for environment and leisure services, councillor David Simpson said, “Well done to all those who took part in this years’ London Youth Games. The Games are an excellent way for young people to stay fit and healthy and show off their sporting skills.

“Special thanks must go to the team managers who gave up their time to train youngsters in the run up to competition. We had a large turn out this year and want an even bigger number taking part next year.”