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Last Updated: Monday, 1 September, 2003, 08:56 GMT 09:56 UK
UK chiefs refuse to panic
Steve Backley was one of several British athletes to disappoint in Paris
UK Athletics performance director Max Jones has been told that his job is safe despite Britain's disappointing display at the World Championships.

Team GB ended their campaign in Paris with two silver and two bronze medals to finish 26th in the medal table.

Although it doubled their medal tally from Edmonton two years ago, it was only the second time in nine world championships that Britain had failed to win a gold medal

But UK Athletics chief executive David Moorcroft said there would not be a shake-up before next year's Olympics in Greece.

"Max will be performance director until Athens," insisted Moorcroft.

We've got to make sure we get all our top athletes fit for Athens because then I believe we will deliver medals
UK Athletics performance director Max Jones

Belarus, Lithuania, Mozambique and the Dominican Republic all finished ahead of Britain in the medal table, although one gold would have been enough to lift the team to equal 10th with Greece.

Injuries were partly responsible for reducing Britain's medal chances, with distance specialist Paula Radcliffe, decathlete Dean Macey and triple jumper Ashia Hansen all ruled out.

But 100m favourite Dwain Chambers, shot putter Carl Myerscough and 400m hurdler Natasha Danvers and javelin hope Steve Backley all failed to live up to expectations.

Chambers was also unable to take advantage of a lead and anchor the 4x100m relay team to victory over the United States on Sunday night.

The best displays came from 100m bronze medallist Darren Campbell, 800m silver medallist Kelly Holmes and Hayley Tullett, who took an unexpected bronze in the 1500m.

Jones, who oversaw a successful European Championships campaign in Munich last summer, refused to accept that performances in Paris signalled an irreversible decline.

"We don't go from heroes to zeroes in the space of a year," he said. "I am relieved because I set a target of four medals and we got them, although they might not have been the colours we would have liked.

"But I know the British public and what matters to them are gold medals. The athletes who under-performed here know who they are, they will be hurting and they won't need us to tell them.

"We have got to make sure that we get all our top athletes fit and on the line for Athens because then I believe we will deliver medals.

"I am still performance director and I am going off to Cyprus this week to look at a training camp for Athens."

Links to more World Athletics 2003 stories


UK Athletics performance director Max Jones
"With the team we had here we did reasonably well"




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