Official Athletics NI announcement: 12 athletes named in Commonwealth Games 2018 squad!

Team Northern Ireland announced – Official announcement from Athletics NI:

The Northern Ireland Commonwealth Games Council (NICGC) has announced its team for the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.

Athletics Northern Ireland is delighted that 12 Track & Field athletes have been selected. With a mix of youth and experience, this is one of the most competitive teams in our history.

The athletes selected include European Bronze medallist Ciara Mageean in the 1500m, Dempsey McGuigan in the Hammer, Heptathlete Kate O’Connor, Commonwealth Youth Games High Jump champion Sommer Lecky, Adam Kirk-Smith in the 3000m Steeplechase and Leon Reid in the 200m.

Joining them will be 110m Hurdler Ben Reynolds, Long Jumper Adam McMullen, Emma Mitchell in the 10,000m, and Kevin Seaward lining up alongside fellow Olympian Paul Pollock in the marathon.

Para-athlete Jack Agnew completes the team and will compete in the T54 1500m.

Jackie Newton, Director of Coaching & Athlete Development at Athletics NI, said: “Athletics Northern Ireland are delighted to have 12 athletes named to represent TeamNI at the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.

‘’We have every confidence in the 12 athletes that have been selected and, along with experienced championship performers, we look forward to the Commonwealth Games debut of our teenage performers – Kate, Sommer and Jack.

‘’We congratulate the personal coaches of the 12 named athletes, and appreciate their dedication and commitment to preparing Northern Ireland athletes to compete against the best Commonwealth nations.

‘’Our vision, for these Games, is that athletes arrive at their event in their best physical shape with a mindset that enables them to perform at their personal best.

‘’We look forward to continuing to support athlete-coach pairs with all elements of their training and integration with Team NI, Sport NI Sports Institute and their support personnel.

‘’Athletics NI are extremely disappointed for some of our athletes that achieved the qualifying standard but were not selected.

‘’We fully believe in the ability of all fifteen athletes we put forward for nomination and the competition for places demonstrates the current strength of athletics in Northern Ireland.

‘’We understand, however, that the pressure on numbers across the other sports has limited the number of available places.

‘’The World Indoor Championships taking place in March and this summer’s European Championships in Berlin will offer valuable opportunities for athletes that were not selected on this occasion to perform at their best on the international stage.”