Well, Gilly gave it a good shot and went off fast before fading to 6th in the home straight. Never mind, he is in good shape and Ireland will be hoping that he brings home a medal in the Euros next year.
In fact it was an improved Worlds performance all round for the Irish. They finished 11th European nation on the placings table compared with 26th last time round. There is plenty that is wrong with the athletics setup here but plenty that is right too.
As for the Brits the bonus medal came from Lisa Dobriskey in the 1500m, a bronze upgraded to silver after a DQ. Then the relay boys did the business – a well-worked sprint bronze, albeit in the absence of the USA. Then an excellent silver in the 4 x 400m behind the USA having struggled a bit in the semis.
Of course there were many other highlights during a fantastic week of athletics and I was able to watch a good deal of it. The field events provided much excitement, not always the case. The men’s shot early in proceedings set the tone, and it helped that the home crowd had plenty to cheer about. The Beeb’s coverage was excellent and indeed Irish viewers had to rely on this or Eurosport. The national broadcaster RTE is essentially bust and, to much indignation, could not see its way to even showing a highlights programme.
I had a juggling act to do yesterday as the Cork v Tyrone senior football semi-final clashed with the athletics, but I managed to access the latter via the ‘Net. And what a result as Cork, a man short from midway through the first half, held off the All-Ireland champions. But they were incredibly fortunate not to lose a second as Miskella, in full view of the cameras, felled his marker with a cowardly punch from behind. Whatever the umpire told the ref it resulted only in a yellow. But how do Gaelic footy players, knowing that it will be picked up 95% of the time, persist in off-the-ball assaults? It’s a mystery to me and should certainly have cost Cork the match yesterday.
Finally, well done to Channel Islands AC men in avoiding relegation from Div 4 of the British Athletics League. That’s two years survived in the BAL now. It would be an easy matter if they were to get their full team out regularly, but that is rarely possible.