Belfast Telegraph

Nine Ulster aces receive Ireland's call for Euros

By Brian Hill

A total of nine Ulster athletes have been included in a strong Irish side that will be hoping to consolidate their place in the First League in the European Team Championships in Crete this weekend.

Newcastle's Kerry O'Flaherty is a last-minute addition in the 1,500 metres following a superb personal best performance of four minutes 12.79 seconds at the weekend in Kildare. This is her fifth PB of the year and makes up for her missing out on selection for the steeplechase despite her recent NI record of 9.51.64.

Ireland's top sprinter, Amy Foster of Lisburn AC, is again named in the 100 metres plus the relay. A month ago, Foster was timed at 11.41 seconds over the distance in Florida, just short of her Irish record.

Commonwealth Games hammer finalist Dempsey McGuigan of Finn Valley is included following his impressive PB throw of 66.90 metres last month in the US.

McGuigan is best remembered for exceeding all expectations to make the final in Glasgow.

University of Ulster's long jumper Adam McMullen, who competed this year in the European Indoors, is also named after his 7.77-metre jump at Loughborough.

NI champion Ben Reynolds of North Down goes in the high hurdles following a useful time of 13.79 seconds in Belgium.

A potential winner in Crete is European 800 metres indoors silver medallist Mark English of UCD, who has already recorded a sub one minute 46 seconds time this season when he finished fifth in Hengelo.

The 22-year-old produced a beautifully judged finishing surge to take the runner-up spot in the Euro Indoors last March.

Commonwealth Games 400 metres hurdler Christine McMahon will race in her specialist event plus the relay. Also named in the Men's sprint relay is Ballymena's Jonathan Browning.

Newcomer Megan Tice of Finn Valley is listed in the high jump after a recent 1.85-metre PB.

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