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“It was brutal out there”

 
Created on 17/04/2018 @ 17:37
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Andrew Davies has lifted the lid on the gruelling conditions that hit the weekend’s Commonwealth Games marathon, and said he gave it his all.

The Forden endurance ace put in a superb effort in searing heat that caused the long-time race leader Callum Hawkins, of Scotland, to collapse just 2km from the finish.

Many runners dropped off but the Newtown college lecturer kept going to finish an impressive 11th.

Speaking to us from Singapore on his way home, Andrew said: “It was brutal out there, so tough.

“I started to struggle after 28km, it was a long 14km back to the finish then.”

Andrew was expecting heat and had trained for it, but on Sunday it became particularly hot on Australia’s Gold Coast and it took its toll on the field.

“I have thought a bit about the race and couldn’t have given any more,” he said. “I think people who were there appreciate how hot it got; it was 30C when we finished. Although I’ve been warm weather training, it was quite hard to replicate those temperatures in training.”

Like all great athletes, Andrew was quick to praise his fellow three British runners that finished in the top 10, saying they had “fantastic runs”.

Family and friends flew out to Australia to cheer him along whilst, back home, thousands of local fans were glued to their television sets watching the action live.

The former semi-professional footballer has enjoyed plenty of local support since he switched to long-distance running, but he said last week took it to a whole new level.

“It was an amazing experience to be involved in the Commonwealth Games. The support I had from back home, not just in Montgomeryshire, but from all over the UK, was amazing. It was pretty overwhelming to be honest.”

Andrew will have a well-earned rest for a few weeks before he will start training for more international summer events “whenever that may be”.

And looking ahead, don’t rule out another bid for the big time from one of sport’s hardest working athletes.

“I was the only marathon runner for Wales in Glasgow in 2014, but now there were four in Australia in much tougher qualifying conditions. So, hopefully next time there will be lots of competition going for the three places available.”

Finally, Andrew admitted that he appreciates his efforts have brought a whole army of fans but had a serious message before setting off on his final flight home.

“I just hope that it has inspired some of the youngsters,” he said.

 

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