Eamonn Martin convinced he will be coaching two stars at the Commonwealth Games 2014 (From Southend Standard)
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Eamonn Martin convinced he will be coaching two stars at the Commonwealth Games 2014
EAMONN Martin is more convinced than ever that he has a great chance of coaching two athletes at the Commonwealth Games in two years’ time.
The former London Marathon winner was at the BMC meeting in Solihull at the weekend to watch his two young charges, Adam Hickey (Southend AC) and Gemma Kersey (Basildon AC), make two giant steps forward in their careers.
Hickey, 24, went under 14 minutes for the 5,000m for the first time in his life while Kersey, 20, knocked five seconds off her 1,500m personal best in a race full of some of Britain’s very best middle-distance talent.
“I am very pleased for both of them and obviously for me it’s great to see both of them do so well,” he said. “And I genuinely do think they both have a chance of going to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.”
While Kersey has been under Martin’s wing for three years now, Hickey’s link up with Britain’s former 10,000m record holder is just six months old.
And in that time he has collected personal bests in the 1,500m, 3,000m and now the 5,000m which he ran in 13m 59.22s in Solihull.
“Adam needs a winter behind him now,” said Martin. “I have not coached him through a winter. He has got amazing amounts of ability and has great potential to go quite a long way.
“He can train over the winter with a lot more confidence now and I think he can challenge for a place on the World Cross-Country team. Then next summer he can start with that performance in mind and build on it.
“Next year will be World Championship trials. I would like to see him in the top five or six there. He will have to be near there to make a push for the Commonwealth’s. But that’s the sort of progression I’m convinced he can do.”
Kersey will also be looking to continue her improvement next season with one eye on the Commonwealth Games a year later, according to her coach.
“The aim for Gemma was to run 4m 14s this year, and then next year for her to hopefully go sub 4m 10s,” said Martin who watched Kersey run 4m 13.54s in Solihull.
“That time won’t sound too far off for her now, so I can work off that. I think realistically she can take another five or six seconds off next year. “Then when you get to that level it’s as much about getting your head right in races. It will also allow her to get in the better races abroad, in better conditions.
“Until Saturday, Gemma has not had the opportunity to run in good conditions this year. She has always been fighting something. Saturday was her first opportunity to do that and she runs a PB.”