Athletics: ‘Flat’ performance no surprise to Charles van Commenee
UK ATHLETICS head coach Charles van Commenee admitted he saw Britain’s “flat” performance in the European Championships coming after two medals on the final day were overshadowed by more relay misery.
Jo Pavey claimed silver in the 10,000 metres at the age of 38, while the men’s 4x400m relay team also took silver in Helsinki. However, the day after Britain’s women failed to secure a place at their home Olympics in the 4x100m relay, the men’s quartet failed to finish their final after another baton mix-up.
That meant a total of seven medals – three gold, three silver and one bronze – in comparison to the record 19 achieved in Barcelona two years ago, but Van Commenee knew that would be the case, with most of the star names missing after securing their Olympic places at the trials last weekend.
“I got confirmation for what I thought was going to happen, a lot of British athletes were very flat here,” Van Commenee said after Britain finished sixth in the medal table behind Germany, Russia, France, Ukraine and Turkey.
“I could see this coming. I decided a year ago to put a selection policy in place keep our best athletes out with the exception of a few for whom I thought it would be helpful.
“It was too much to do rounds at the weekend [at the trials] and again five or six days later. I’m relatively happy that we return home with our best athletes undamaged.”
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Tuesday 21 May 2013
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