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Dave rallies to successful title defence


from Athletic Northern Ireland website A stirring comeback took North Belfast Harrier Dave Morwood to victory at the 21st British & Irish Masters’ International Cross-Country Championships in Swansea.
Defending his M35 title, Morwood looked to be struggling in third place at the halfway point of the eight-kilometre event, but rallied strongly to regain the initiative over the final two laps of an extremely hilly Singleton Park course.

The 38-year-old Jordanstown optometrist was a surprise winner last year on home territory at Stormont, when he became only the third Northern Ireland athlete to take a gold medal in the history of these championships.

“I thought after two laps it may not be my day but at the same time I was still in contention and I just decided to give it all I could,” said an ecstatic Morwood.

There was little else to cheer about for local veterans with only Gerry Lynch, fourth in the M60 age group, coming close to a podium position.

Another North Belfast Harrier, Paul Blayney, and Letterkenny GP Brian Thursby-Pelham, were members of the South’s squad that pulled off an unexpected team victory in the M35 section.

Meanwhile Ireland’s fastest man, Paul Hession from Athenry, was named Athlete of the Year at Saturday night’s National Athletics Awards in Dublin.

In total 14 awards were distributed during the function held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Santry and supported by Waterford Crystal.

The pinnacle of Hession’s succsses this year was no doubt reaching the semi final of the 200m in Beijing and just failing to progress to the final eight.
Malcolm McCausland (Irish News)