Baddeley sets up Lancashire's debut on the big stage

Mike Rowbottom
Wednesday 11 June 2008 00:00
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Andy Baddeley's achievement in joining his fellow Britons Steve Cram, Steve Ovett and Peter Elliott as a winner of the Oslo Dream Mile last Friday night was recognised in yesterday's announcement of the European Cup team, in which he has been offered his distance of choice, the 3,000 metres.

The decision by the UK Athletics selectors for the event that takes place in Annecy, France, on 21-22 June opens the way for the winner of the 1500m in the Bislett Stadium, Tom Lancashire, to make his international debut over the metric mile at the venue where Britain's men last won the European Cup in 2002, albeit that the victory is now credited to Germany following the annulment of Dwain Chambers' 100m victory.

Baddeley, a 25-year-old who has a first-class degree in aeronautical engineering from Cambridge University, broke through the 3min 50sec barrier on Friday with a superbly timed late charge, but believes his Olympic prospects will be best served by running over a longer distance in Annecy to build up strength.

Lancashire, a former European junior silver medallist who is now based at a US university, won his 1500m in a personal best of 3min 35.33sec.

The world 400m champion Christine Ohuruogu has been chosen in the 200m after running under 23sec in Oslo for the first time. Nicola Sanders, whom Ohuruogu narrowly beat to the gold in Osaka, will run the one-lap event.

Kelly Sotherton, the heptathlon bronze medallist in Japan, has been selected for the 4x400m relay squad, having recovered from a kidney infection.

As expected, the 100m place goes to Tyrone Edgar, who trains under US coach John Smith and has recorded 10.06sec this season, 0.02 faster than Marlon Devonish, who goes in the 200m.

Dave Collins, UK Athletics performance director, said: "In an Olympic year, the European Cup is obviously not top of our priority list, but it is still an important competition."

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