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6 of the Best for Finland

Eilidh Child

Eilidh Child

Six Scottish athletes have today been named in Team Great Britain for the European Championships in Finland later this month.

The pool released by UK Athletics is a provisional one with those men and women who secure spots at London 2012 set to be withdrawn from the Europeans in Helsinki.

That could mean the all six missing out on Finland to prepare for London with the likes of Eilidh Child, Steph Twell and Eilish McColgan already having A standards.

So much will hinge on the AVIVA Olympic Trials in Birmingham which start this Friday and run through to Sunday as Charles van Commenee and his staff make final deliberations late next weekend.

Hammer thrower Mark Dry is named as the only man among the Scottish contingent – with the women Child, Twell, McColgan, Lynsey Sharp and Lee McConnell.

Eilidh has been named in the 4 x 400m relay squad rather than the 400m hurdles while Lee is named for the 400m individual and relay events.

Steph Twell is named for the 1500m and the 5000m but is understood to be tackling only the longer distance on the track at Birmingham in the Olympic trials. Steph han’t made the A standard yet at 1500m.

Lynsey Sharp (pictured) is one of five women named for the 800m in a lineup which includes Emma Jackson, Jenny Meadows and Jemma Simpson.

The surprise is the omission of four Scottish men from the middle distance events with frustration the only emtion for Dave Bishop, Chris O’Hare, Kris Gauson and Guy Learmonth.

In the men’s 1500m, for example, there is no Scottish representative among the five athletes named for GB – despite Bishop, O’Hare and Gauson all being ranked in a top eight currently which has Mo Farah at the summit (so effectively a top seven). Bishop and O’Hare are both ranked higher than Tom Lancashire and James Brewer. James Shane, another Helsinki pick, hasn’t run 1500m this year and has only raced on three occasions.

Learmonth is currently ranked six in Britain in the 800m with No 5, Welshman Joe Thomas, currently injured. But Learmonth missed out as only four athletes were picked (the top four in the rankings) and a decision taken not to include a fifth.

The event in Finland takes place from June 27 to July 1 and the final team selection will be narrowed down next Monday following the Olympic trial.

All six named are members of the 41-strong scottishathletics Commonwealth Games squad who receive backing for the current 12-month period.

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