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Last Updated: Thursday, 23 March 2006, 05:46 GMT
Killeen secures gold for England
By Matt Majendie
BBC Sport in Melbourne

Liam Killeen
Killeen went into the race as a strong favourite
Liam Killeen produced a stunning comeback to lead home team-mate Oli Beckingsale in an England one-two in the Commonwealth Games mountain biking.

The 23-year-old, who won bronze in Manchester four years ago, struggled in the early part of the race, falling 90 seconds behind leader Chris Jongewaard.

But he reeled the Australian in on the penultimate lap and pulled clear in the dying stages to win by 15 seconds.

Canada's Seamus McGrath took bronze after a gritty ride.

Killeen, who was cheered on by Prince Edward at Lysterfield Park, said: "I really believed in myself even when I went through that bad patch.

"I trusted in myself and backed myself to catch up with Jongewaard.

"Oli and I were the strongest two riders in the race and it was all about fighting it out between us in the late stages."

Killeen dedicated the win to his mum and his 93-year-old grandfather, who is battling cancer.

"It was him that got me through the race - he was in my thoughts a lot," he said.

It was too good an opportunity to miss
England's Amy Hunt on her unexpected ride in the women's event

Beckingsale had a mixed race, having stopped twice and losing 20 seconds to repair his bike.

He said: "I'm really pleased with the silver but I was so strong today so it's a little bit disappointing and a case of what could have been.

"After all the success of the England guys in the velodrome, Liam and I were under a lot of pressure and we showed we are really world class."

In the women's race, England's Amy Hunt finished fourth more than six minutes behind race winner Canada's Marie-Helene Premont.

The 19-year-old's result was remarkable considering she had only travelled to Melbourne for the women's road race on Sunday.

"It was just to see how I'd get on because I haven't got a particular discipline as well as the road and it was too good an opportunity to miss," she said.

Premont had to cope with the unexpected intervention of a kangaroo during her ride, but managed to steer clear.



Links to more Commonwealth Games stories


 



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