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Morpeth and Gateshead go head to head
JUBILANT Morpeth Harriers, who celebrated two senior men's team awards in last weekend's English National Championships at Sunderland, continue their battle with arch-rivals Gateshead Harriers for the North-East Harrier League title in the penultimate fixture at Alnwick today.
The Northumbrian club, which also won the prestigious Royal Signals North-East road relay title last month, are currently only one point ahead of their Tyneside adversaries, who had earlier topped the Division One Table for two fixtures before a shock plunge to fourth place in the last fixture at Wrekenton.
Now Morpeth will aim to take full advantage of a "home" fixture at The Pastures, Alnwick before the notoriously gruelling final meeting over farmland at Prudhoe on March 23.
Durham City's Dan Jenkin leads in the senior men's grand prix with 15 points from two runs, while in the veteran's grand prix there is a close tussle between Heaton's Jamie Barbour (20 pts) and Elswick's Les Bennett (18).
The women's Division One title race is still wide open after surprise slip-ups by previous leaders Tyne Bridge and Tynedale, who finished ninth and eighth respectively at Wrekenton, with third-placed Heaton - champions for four years before losing out last season to Tynedale - going top with 13 points, two clear of the chasing pair.
Team placings (after four fixtures) - Senior Men Division 1: 1 Morpeth 13; 2 Gateshead 14; 3= Sunderland and Durham City 16; 5 South Shields 17. Div 2: 1 Tyne Bridge 4; 2= Tynedale and Birtley 14; 4 Elswick 16. Div 3: 1 Jarrow & Hebburn 8; 2 Jsemond Joggers 9; Blackhill Bounders 12; 4 Blyth 15.
Senior Women: Div 1: 1 Heaton 13; 2= Tyne Bridge and Tynedale15.