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Super 8 Long Jump Battle

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Greg Rutherford
Rutherford - is winning 8-2 on head to heads with Tomlinson


28 May 2009

Chris Tomlinson and Greg Rutherford are set to renew their rivalry for British long jump supremacy at the Super8 competition at the Cardiff International Sports Arena on 10 June.

It will be the first time they have gone head-to-head in competition since joining forces in the same training group. 2008 World indoor silver medallist Tomlinson joined 2006 European silver medallist Rutherford under the tutelage of his long-term coach Frank Attoh at Brunel University in September 2008.

The career head-to-head is 8-2 in Rutherford’s favour, but Tomlinson holds the UK record with 8.27m. An interested spectator will be Welsh athletics legend and UKA Members Council President Lynn Davies, who was born in nearby Bridgend and went on to win long jump gold at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.

Davies said: “I think it’s great that the two best long jumpers in the country are coming together to compete at the Super8 competition in Cardiff. Chris was fifth in the Athens Olympics and Greg reached the final in Beijing, so they are two world class jumpers.

“The Welsh public regularly get to see top class football and top class rugby, but rarely the chance to see top class athletics, so this is a wonderful opportunity for them. I think it’s a great format and I’m really looking forward to the night. I only wish I was competing myself.

“Cardiff is a brilliant sporting city and I have great memories of competing there. I broke the UK record there in 1964, not long before going on to the Tokyo Olympics and it really gave me the confidence to go and achieve what I did.”

Rutherford, who will represent London North, said: “This type of competition really appeals to me, it’s fast, exciting and looking at the line-ups it should be keenly-fought. In my own event, I’m looking forward to a good competition against Chris. We have a healthy rivalry which can bring out the best in each other.

 “We have been working really well together in training, but in competition it is different. We are both ambitious and both want to win, so we’ll both be giving everything we can to get one over the other.”

Tomlinson, who will compete for Newcastle said: “It’s been a bad week for sport in the North East with two football clubs being relegated from the Premiership. My own team is Middlesbrough and I was gutted they went down, so as the North East team, we need to regain some sporting pride at the Super8 competition.

“I’m really looking forward to the event. Myself and Greg are thriving on training together and I’m hoping to translate that to competition. I’ll be aiming for maximum points for Newcastle, but I’m sure Greg will be hoping for the same for London North. It should be a great contest.”

The exciting two-hour City versus City concept is being piloted in the Welsh capital next month and several leading British athletes have confirmed their participation.

The host city Cardiff will be hoping to be inspired by a big home crowd as they take on all-star teams from London North, Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle, London South, Glasgow and Sheffield at the evening meeting which begins at 7pm Wednesday 10 June.

Confirmed names for Super8 already include Olympic 400m hurdles bronze medallist Tasha Danvers who will captain London South, Olympic 200m finalist Christian Malcolm who will captain Cardiff, Olympic javelin fourth-placer Goldie Sayers who will compete for London North and UK Indoor 800m champion Jenny Meadows who will captain Manchester.

Sky Sports have also confirmed they will broadcast the event. More big names will be announced in the coming days. Tickets are now on sale at £5 (seating) or £3 (standing) for adults, U16s are free, provided they are accompanied by a paying adult. Tickets can be purchased at www.uka.org.uk/super8 or by calling the ticket hotline on 0844 844 0808.