De Rozario wins Commonwealth Games marathon

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John Salvado & Anna Harrington / AAP News

 

The Gold Coast 2018 gold medallist has defended her marathon title in Birmingham.

 

Australian wheelchair racing star Madison de Rozario has added the Birmingham Commonwealth marathon title to her glittering array of golds.

De Rozario dominated the opening event of the 2022 Games athletics competition on Saturday in a winning time of one hour and 56 minutes.

She is favoured to complete the T53/54 marathon/1500m double for a second straight Commonwealth Games.

Eden Rainbow-Cooper took silver and fellow Englishwoman Shelly Oxley-Woods was third ahead of Australian Christie Dawes, but there was no bronze medal awarded as there were only four starters in the women’s race.

In the able-bodied men’s race, Liam Adams was unlucky not to be rewarded with a podium place after a brave display of front-running.

The electrician from Melbourne led for the first 25 kilometres before eventually crossing in fourth spot in 2:13:23.

Victor Kiplangat won Uganda’s first Commonwealth marathon title in 2:10:55 ahead of Tanzania’s Alphonce Simbu and Ke nyan Michael Githae, with Australia’s Andrew Buchanan seventh in 2:15:40.

Journeyman Adams gutsy fourth in marathon

The full-time electrician from Melbourne has produced an outstanding run to finish fourth in the men's marathon.

De Rozario, 28, won the marathon and the 800m at last year’s Tokyo Paralympics and has also claimed three world para-athletics championships titles.

“We talk about defending titles but we try so hard in my performance team to keep each race in a bubble and you try so hard to not let previous successes or previous failures colour what you’re about to do and that can be really, really challenging,” she said.

“Sometimes the confidence is too much and you kind of get ahead of yourself and sometimes it’s too much in the way that it’s debilitating pressure instead, and so we try and step away from all of that.

But it’s definitely a little motivator, when you know what it feels like to be on top of that podium, you obviously want it that little bit more.”

Johnboy Smith won the men’s T53/54 marathon title in Birmingham in 1:41:15 after fellow Englishman David Weir’s gold-medal bid was scuppered by a mid-race puncture while he was leading.

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