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Fagan seeking to Retain 10k Title


Martin Fagan of Mullingar Harriers will face stiff opposition when competing in the Woodie’s DIY 10k Championships of Ireland this coming Sunday in the Phoenix Park, which is part of the SPAR Great Ireland Run . Fagan, who a year ago became the first ever Irish male winner of the SPAR Great Ireland Run, is fully prepared mentally and physically to retain his title, although on this occasion the task will be very much harder.

 The US-based athlete admitted his 2010 success was made less difficult because of the absence of several overseas stars caused by the flight cancellations due to the volcanic ash disruption on travelling. Fagan knows he will have to be at his very best to contend with Sergey Lebid, Europe’s greatest ever cross country runner and Jesus Espana of Spain, European 5000m Silver Medallist. Rui Silva from Portugal, the highly experienced former Olympic and World medallist will also be part of the highly competitive field. The reigning Inter-county and Interclub Cross Country Champion Joe Sweeney of Dundrum South Dublin will also be looking to be in the mix. Other athletes who will be part of the elite field include Brian Farrell (Sli Cualann), Mark Kirwan (Raheny AC), Sean Hehir (Rathfarnham WSAF AC), and Sergiu Ciobanu (Clonliffe Harriers AC). In the women’s race Mary Cullen (North Sligo AC) the former European Indoor 3000m bronze medallist, will be aiming to further prove her credentials following a return to competition, after a run of injuries. While Fionnuala Briton (Kilcoole AC), will be looking to continue her string of good form after finishing an excellent 16th at World Cross Country Championships. The Irish duo will be aiming to upset race favourite Ethopia’s Berhane Adere one the world’s greatest ever women’s distance runners. Teenager Charlotte Purdue (UK) the top European finisher at the recent World Cross Country Championships is also planning to compete. Ava Hutchinson of Dundrum South Dublin AC who recently won the Woodie’s DIY Interclub Championships will also compete in the twenty strong elite field.