Another eventful evening for England at Nitro Athletics
Two storming finishes saw England’s relay athletes and Erin McBride (Club: Liverpool Harriers, Coach: Robert Roberts) both pip their Australian rivals to the line in the mixed 4x400m relay and 200m respectively - as it was another eventful evening for England at Nitro Athletics in Melbourne.
Another big crowd enjoyed an evening of frantic and fast-paced entertainment, as IAAF President Sebastian Coe was among the spectators looking on.
Teams were given the option of deciding which legs their female and male athletes contested in the opening event of the night and, with Australia electing to alternate between men and women in their 4x400m running order, England’s Head Coach Tony Hadley employed the potentially risky strategy of placing Conrad Williams (Club: Kent AC, Coach: Lloyd Cowan) and Theo Campbell (Club: Birchfield Harriers, Coach: James Hillier) on legs three and four, meaning that both Hannah Williams (Club: Herts Phoenix, Coach: Colin Gaynor) and Christine Ohuruogu (Club: Newham & Essex Beagles, Coach: Lloyd Cowan) found themselves up against male rivals. The strategy worked to perfection, as both men ate into the leads that the other countries had built, before Campbell roared past Australian Olympian Morgan Mitchell in the final strides.
T13 (visually impaired) sprinter Erin McBride had been selected to run the ambulant races in Melbourne, but following an injury to Bianca Williams (Club: Enfield & Haringey, Coach: Lloyd Cowan), she stepped in to run the 60m against non-disabled athletes, running a PB-equalling 8.39, before producing a superb performance to win her specialist 200m. It was a finish reminiscent of team captain Ohuruogu at her best, as she clawed back her Australian rival Ella Pardy in the final millimetres.
Other highlights for England were a second placed finish from Charlene Thomas (Club: Wakefield, Coach: Aaron Thomas) in the dreaded elimination mile and a personal best 6.67 for second in the 60m for Confidence Lawson (Club: Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers, Coach: Clarence Callender). Conrad Williams returned to partner Margaret Adeoye (Club: Enfield & Haringey, Coach: Linford Christie) to take second in the 2x300m relay, while Gabriel Odujobi (Club: Sale Harriers Manchester, Coach: Tony Jarrett) matched that result in the 110m hurdles, clocking 14.08.
- Click here for full results and team standings after night two
- Click here for the schedule for the final night of Nitro Athletics
The third Nitro Athletics event takes place on February 11th and both Thursday’s and Saturday’s events will be featured in highlights programmes broadcast on BBC2. Thursday’s meeting will be shown on Saturday 11th February at 13:15 and Saturday’s final will be broadcast on Sunday 12th at 13:00.
The England team:
- Jo Blair (Luton/ Rugby & Northampton, David Burrell)
- Karla Drew (Sheffield & Dearne, Antonio Minichiello)
- Joe Dunderdale (Sheffield & Dearne)
- Mary Elcock (Oldham & Royton, Karen Williams)
- Adam Hague (Sheffield & Dearne/Sheffield Hallam Uni, Trevor Fox)
- Scott Hall (Gateshead, Sam Stanislaus)
- Gabriel Odujobi (Sale Harriers Manchester, Tony Jarrett)
Abigail Roberts (Sheffield & Dearne, Trevor Fox)
- Margaret Adeoye (Enfield & Haringey, Linford Christie)
- James Arnott (City of Plymouth, Ryan Freckleton)
- Theo Campbell (Birchfield H, James Hillier)
- Confidence Lawson (Shaftesbury Barnet, Clarence Callender)
- Erin McBride (Liverpool Harriers, Robert Roberts)
- Christine Ohuruogu (Newham & Essex Beagles, Lloyd Cowan)
- Kieran Showler-Davis (Basingstoke & Mid Hants, John Davis)
- Conrad Williams (Kent, Lloyd Cowan)
- Bianca Williams (Enfield & Haringey, Lloyd Cowan)
Hannah Williams (Herts Phoenix, Colin Gaynor)
- Alex Bell (Pudsey & Bramley, Aaron Thomas)
- Alison Leonard (Blackburn, Bud Baldaro)
- Michael Rimmer (Liverpool Pembroke, John Bigg)
- Charlene Thomas (Wakefield, Aaron Thomas)
- Jamie Webb (Liverpool H, Rob Denmark/ Adrian Webb)
- Richard Weir (Derby, Spencer Duval)