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Commonwealth Games (11)

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Michelle Ross-Cope
14 October 2010 

England's Michelle Ross-Cope (Bud Baldaro) put aside injury concerns to finish a creditable sixth in the women's marathon at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

The 38-year old - who ran into a superb 14th place at the recent European Championships in Barcelona - had less than ideal preparation for the event, claiming she was short of full fitness after having her training disrupted by an Achilles injury.

But she ran a well-judged race, clocking 2:36.14 to finish just under 12 minutes behind Irene Kosgei, the first Kenyan woman to win the Commonwealth marathon title.

“I just sat back like in Barcelona and worked my way through. I had to stop twice for the toilet, as my stomach was a bit bad the first two laps,” she said.

“Luckily, it settled down. I was sick in the night and had a bit of a dodgy tummy yesterday. It settled down this morning, but it still was a bit dodgy. 

"I think the marathon is about being patient and not getting stressed about it. 

"It worked really well really. Conditions were pretty tough. It's very hot. It's nice in the shade, but as soon as you get in the sun, it's really warm out there.

"Overall I'm very pleased. The times are down, but placings are what it is all about in the Commonwealths."

English team-mates Helen Decker (Clive Sparkes) and Holly Rush (Martin Rush) ran alongside each other throughout to cross the line in eighth and ninth respectively, both recording the same 2:49.24 time.

Ben Moreau was the top British finisher in the men's race, which was won by Kenya's John Kelai.

Moreau finished 11th in 2:24.34, while Scotland's Martin Williams (Bud Baldaro) was 14th, in 2:25.46.

"I thought it was going to be worse than it was," admitted Moreau. 

"I thought it was going to be horrific and the humidity was going to be horrible. 

"I thought it would be me against the conditions, rather than the rest of the field. But, I'm happy with the result and compared to the home nation guys, I managed to run well and they're my only real measure. 

"I've felt quite fresh since Barcelona and that was a hard race. I felt good in training and pretty confident coming into this."

However, Andi Jones (Bob Merrell) found the heat tough - despite the early morning start time - and was forced to withdraw after 30km.

"It's disappointing not to have finished again obviously," said Jones, who also didn't complete the European Championship marathon earlier this year. 

"I was going all right. But a couple of months ago now, I was complaining of a tight hamstring. I got it sorted out with a physio. 

"But today, after about 17 or 18k, the leg was just really tight as I went on and on, my leg was more and more tight. I just couldn't bend it as I was running - it was just slowing me down."