Friday 21 October 2016

Rio-bound Mark English impresses in his opening run of 2016 in Dusseldorf

Cathal Dennehy

Published 03/02/2016 | 21:15

Mark English
Mark English

Mark English got his season off to a good start when finishing second over 800m at the PSD Meeting in Dusseldorf tonight, the 22-year-old from Donegal running 1:47.28 to finish marginally behind race winner Mussaeb Balla of Qatar (1:46.79).

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In what was his first race of 2016, English ran conservatively through the opening 400m, sitting well off the pace as the leaders passed 400m in a swift 51.22 seconds. On the third lap, however, he began to move through the field, coasting up to second place with 200m to run.

Despite his best efforts to claw back Balla over the final 100m, though, the Qatari simply had too much in reserve and held on to take the win.

Though English’s time of 1:47.28 was outside his Irish indoor record of 1:46.82, the UCD student was pleased with his season opener, and his next race will likely be at the Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix on February 20, where many of English’s world class rivals are expected to be in opposition.

English, who recently returned from a three-week training stint in South Africa, is not intending to compete at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Portland, Oregon, which take place from 17-20 March.

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