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commonwealth gaMES (2)

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Dan West
Dan West

07 October 2010

Three-time Paralympic medallist Dan West (Jim Edwards) has claimed England’s second medal of the athletics competition, with a silver medal in the F32/34/52 shot put after a best throw of 10.78m.

Canada’s Kyle Pettet took gold with a new World Record effort of 11.44m, while Welsh duo Ashleigh Hellyer and Daniel Davies finished fifth and seventh respectively.

West looked to be cruising to gold after his first three attempts at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium produced a best of 10.64m, however, in what turned out to be a two-horse race between Pettey and West, the Canadian produced an enormous throw with his fourth attempt to record 10.67m.

Pettey then extended his lead over the 32-year-old Englishman, taking gold after a world record fifth attempt of 11.47m with West recording 10.78m.

West was gracious in defeat but with the duo set to go head-to-head at the IPC World Athletics Championships in New Zealand in January, he has vowed not to be in such a polite mood. “It was a big throw by Kyle and I am not sure I would have got up to that distance...maybe at the Worlds but not quite here,” he said.

“I came here to compete with Kyle but I am happy with silver – you have got to be. But the Worlds in January are the main aim for me.

“So I will get back home, get back into hard training and we will see what happens. Looking ahead to the London 2012 Paralympics this is not really a major competition but still a good one.

“We haven’t had a big competition since the Beijing Paralympics in 2008 so it is good preparation for the Worlds, which is then good preparation for 2012.”

England high jumper Martyn Bernard (Dan Pfaff) was a shock casualty on the second day of the athletics at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi as he failed to progress through the qualifying stages.

The 25-year-old claimed Commonwealth silver four years ago in Melbourne and won European bronze in Barcelona this summer with a personal best clearance of 2.29m.

But in Delhi he struggled with a knee problem and could only manage a best effort of 2.13m and as a result missed out on the final.

"I was having a bit of trouble with my knee but I thought that 2.13m would be enough to get me through to the final," said Bernard.

"Ideally I wanted to skip 2.16m and then give myself a bit of a rest and come back for the final but then a few people started going over and I knew I would have to do it but it wasn't to be.

"It is just such a shame that I wasn't able to go out and clear it and get myself into another final this year, I'm gutted to be honest.”

England’s Tom Parsons (Fayyaz Ahmed) who failed to make it out of the heats in the pouring rain in Barcelona three months ago, revelled in the searing Delhi heat to clear 2.16m with ease and book his final appearance.

In addition to being one of the most experienced competitors in the field, the 26-year-old’s lifetime best of 2.30m - set in 2008 - places him firmly in the medal picture.

Teammate Samson Oni also qualified to the next stage of competition also clearing 2.16m, preserving enough energy for the final.

Meanwhile, home nations trio Helen Clitheroe (Trevor Painter), Steph Twell (Mick Woods) and Hannah England (Bud Baldaro) made no mistake in progressing through the heats of the 1500m.

Clitheroe was the pick of the bunch, clocking the second fastest time of the field as she crossed the line in 4:09.34 minutes as Kenya’s Viola Kibwott topped the pile.

Twell - former 1500m world junior champion - competing in Scotland colours, crossed the line in 4:10.35 minutes, making her the fourth quickest.

England meanwhile, was taking part in a far slower heat but also made no mistake as she advanced in 13th place with a time of 4:13.91 minutes.

England said: “It felt really good out there. It’s nice to have a heat like that where you feel comfortable already and it really gives me a boost ahead of tomorrow.

“We’ll see about medals. It’s going to be an interesting competition because there are some strong competitors out there.”

Northern Ireland’s Ciara Mageean (Eamonn Christie) also squeezed through to the final, clocking 4:12.11 minutes but compatriot Kelly McNeice failed to advance.

England sprinter Conrad Williams (Linford Christie) clocked 45.78secs to breeze through the 400m heats as the fastest qualifier for tomorrow’s semi-finals.

Williams, who claimed 4x400m silver at July’s European Championships, finished comfortably clear of Michael Mathieu of the Bahamas and insists there’s plenty more to come from him in Delhi.

“It was great to get the heat off my back because you are never quite sure how they are going to go and now I can just focus on improving and putting myself in the medals,” said Williams.

“I wanted to come out and test myself and try and see where I am and it sent shock waves through my body and shows me I am in great shape and ready to run.” 

England’s Rob Tobin (Todd Bennett) also looked impressive, qualifying automatically in 46.26 seconds, while teammate Graham Hedman (Nick Dakin) managed to squeeze through as a fastest loser after finishing fourth in heat three in 47.45 seconds.

There was no such luck for Guernsey’s Hywel Robinson though whose time of 50.08 secondss saw him miss out on the semi-finals.

In the men’s decathlon Martin Brockman (Christopher Bowman) is the best placed of the home nations athletes after accruing 2363 points to sit sixth overall.

Team-mate Ben Hazell (Bill Jewers) is one place further back on 2336pts with England’s Kevin Sempers (Ian Grant) tenth on 2274pts and Scotland’s Roger Skedd (Greg Richards) 14th on 2012pts.

Northern Ireland’s Tom Reynolds is ninth on 2301pts with Ben Gregory (Alan Richardson) of Wales 12th on 2189pts.  

And in the men’s T46 100m, Ola Abidogun (Steven Thomas) stormed to victory in his heat in a new personal best of 11.37 seconds.