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The Irish News Archive: Aug 20 1998: Sonia O'Sullivan crowned queen of Europe

GOLDEN DELIGHT... Sonia O’Sullivan
The Irish News Archive

SONIA O’Sullivan was crowned queen of Europe last night after a stunning 10,000metres debut at the European Championships in Budapest.

O’Sullivan, who scored a unique double at the World Cross Country Championships last March, ran the perfect race.

The Cobh athlete will now set her sights on another historic double by chasing the 5,000m crown on Sunday – and few would bet against her after the performance last night.

“There were times in the race when it got a little bit tough,” said the former world 5,000m champion, whose form had been in doubt.

“But everything fell into place when I got to half-way.

“I thought: ‘Right you can’t lose form here. This is my area now’.

“But I never thought about winning until I was in the last 1,000 because you can get distracted.

“People said I was crazy doing the 10,000m. But people have doubted my ability before, but not now.

“It was like a training session.”

The 28-year-old had never led the 25- lap race until she kicked for home from 200m with a burst of speed the others could not match and she gleefully crossed the line in 31 minutes 29.33 seconds.

Portugal’s Fernanda Ribeiro, the Olympic champion and European title holder, had to settle for second (31:32.42) 20 metres adrift, with Romania’s Lidia Simon third in 31.32.64.

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Scottish League Cup third round: Airdrie 1 Celtic 0

Celts knocked out by marvellous Marvyn

THEIR intention was to christen the new Shyberry Excelsior stadium, but instead Airdrie made a name for themselves to stun Scottish League Cup holders, Celtic.

A memorable night was capped by its very own local hero, Marvyn Wilson, Airdrie born and bred, whose 16th minute goal produced a major upset at this 10,000- capacity ground.

Wilson struck his penalty kick straight at Jonathan Gould, but was on hand to convert the rebound and the home team more than held their own to retain that advantage to the last.

Celtic head coach Jozef Venglos was a despairing figure on the touchline as his expensive talents came out second best to First Division opposition in this third round tie.

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Current Derry and Ulster minor champions Ballinderry have progressed to the next round of the county championship, beating arch-rivals Bellaghy in a pulsating game at Ballinascreen.

The Tones raced into an early four points lead 1-2 to 0-1, but the young Shamrocks refused to panic and scored some delightful points to win 0- 12 to 1-6, with Darren McGeehan on top form scoring 0-7.

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