Oct 31 2012 By Gordon Parks
Sally Pearson Image 2
OLYMPIC champion Sally Pearson is planning to defend her Commonwealth title at Glasgow 2014.
The Australian hurdler’s coach, Sharon Hannan, revealed the news during a visit to the city.
Hannan was in Scotland to attend the International Festival of Athletics Coaching last weekend. She took sessions with emerging Scottish hurdling talent in conjunction with Glasgow Life at the new £113million Emirates Arena.
Pearson, 26, is a huge name in the sport and the reigning Commonwealth, World and Olympic champion after setting an Olympic record in the 100m hurdles at London 2012.
Now, in a significant boost for Glasgow 2014 organisers, Hannan underlined the intention to bring her star athlete back to these shores.
Hannan insists the Commonwealth Games are still major draw for Australian athletics.
She said: “I was disappointed when Jamaica didn’t send their A-team to Delhi and those who did travel didn’t bring their A-game, either.
“It is absolutely in our plans for Sally to come to Glasgow 2014 and defend her Commonwealth title.
“She has a little bit of a back problem at the moment but will get that sorted and hopes to be at Moscow for the World Champs next summer. Then we will think about Scotland.
“In fact, I think the decision to send the Commonwealth Games to the Gold Coast in Australia might be enough to persuade her to delay her retirement. I think she feels a home games in 2018 would be lovely.”
Meanwhile, Kilbarchan’s Derek Hawkins is the talk of Scottish athletics after a sensational marathon debut last weekend.
The Scottish Cross Country champion ran 2.14:04 on his debut over the distance in Frankfurt.
That was five minutes quicker than the 2.19 qualification standard being asked for Glasgow 2014 and the second best time by a male British marathon runner this year. It also rocketed Hawkins straight into the all-time list for Scottish men at No.12.
Derek’s father, Robert, was named Performance Coach of the Year at the scottishathletics Awards on Saturday.