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Dai Greene Back On The Big Stage As The Comeback Continues

By Owen Morgan

Former world champion Dai Greene announced his return to the global stage with a third place finish at the inaugural Athletics World Cup in London on Sunday night.

The 2011 400m hurdle world champion has endured an injury nightmare over the past five years, which would have seen many athletes quit the sport.

But Greene says his love for the sport has kept him going and on Saturday evening he was back at the London Stadium where he finished fourth in the Olympic final in 2012. This time he went one better.

Fittingly for a man who once scored a penalty for Swansea City’s youth team against Real Madrid, Greene got into the mood for the final by watching the  France v Croatia World Cup final before heading for the stadium.

And it certain put the Swansea Harrier in the right frame of mind as he finished the race strongly to overcome Jamaican Annsert Whyte and finish behind Poland’s Patryk Dobek and winner Kenny Selmon, of the USA.

After the race Greene said: “It’s good to be back, it’s been a long time since I’ve been here and nice to get top three here today.

“If you’d said to me this is how the summer would pan out I’d have bit your hand of six months ago, so I’m very happy to be in this position.

“I’m relatively injury free over the last few months, which is great. I feel I’m at a low risk of injury, which is even better. I need to grind out the sessions, train through next week and build for the Europeans.”

Brett Morse. Pic: Getty Images.

Having waiting so long to return to the big stage, Greene will be back at the London Stadium next weekend for the Diamond League meeting before heading for the European Athletics Championships in Berlin next month.

Greene said after his British Championship win two weeks ago, which earned his World Cup place, that he hoped the victory would bring in the invitations to the big meetings once again. His wish has certainly been granted.

Another Welsh athlete who was delighted to return to the big stage at this World Cup was discus thrower Brett Morse, who also booked his place with a win at the British Championship.

The Cardiff AAC man also performed at the stadium during those unforgettable London Olympics of 2012 and was delighted to be returning there last weekend.

Before the event he said: “Since this World Cup has been announced I’ve wanted to go, I want to be there.

“The reason I started athletics was for that kind of thing, the big events with a lot of support, a lot of positive energy to get up for it.”

On Saturday night he finished seventh in the discus with a throw of 59.72, his second longest throw of the season.

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At the other end of the experience spectrum, the third Welsh athlete at the World Cup, Sam Gordon, pulled on a Great Britain vest for the first time as he formed part of a young and inexperienced team in the 4x100m.

The Cardiff AAC athlete and his team mates finished eighth in a time of 38.97 in a race where there was only just over half a second separating all eight teams.

The USA finished first in a time of 38.42 with Jamaica second and South Africa third.

And it was the USA who triumphed overall to win the inaugural World Cup, with Poland second and Great Britain finishing third.


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