17 May 2014

Kiwi middle distance runners in form

9:12 am on 17 May 2014

Cambridge runner Nikki Hamblin has turned in her best performance in the 1500 metres in three years to meet the Commonwealth Games qualifying standard at a meet in Los Angeles.

Hamblin, the double silver medallist from the last Games in Delhi, grabbed second place in a tight finish in the 1500 A race, recording 4:07.07 to go comfortably under the Glasgow Games B standard of 4:09.

Michigan-based Nick Willis ran a Games qualifying time in the unfamiliar 5000 distance, taking seven seconds off his personal best, his time of 13:20.33 and third place opening up potential doubling options.

Julian Matthews also battled it out with long-time rival Hamish Carson in the men's 1500 B race as both sought one of the 1500 spots in Glasgow alongside Willis.

Carson fell away at the end though and Matthews came through over the last 200 metres to take third in a time of 3:38.20, his second Commonwealth Games B standard performance putting him in the box seat for selection.

Carson's time was 3:39.63, still a little shy of the 3:38.60 standard.