The man charged with leading our track and field team at Hampden believes the selections offer good signs for the future.
Stephen Maguire placed a big emphasis on coach education when he arrived in Scotland and that crucial work will continue following his departure to a post with British Athletics.
For now, the immediate focus is ‘Perform when it counts’ at Hampden for the 58-strong Team Scotland announced at Stirling Castle on Thursday.
But Maguire firmly believes there should also be hope for the years ahead and the next Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast 2018, with no fewer than 30 of those announced aged 23 or under.
The average age of our track, field and marathon squad is 25 with in fact 40 in total aged 26 and under.
Henrietta Paxton’s fine 4.30m pole vault performance on Thursday night – her best clearance for four years – took up to 14 the number of Scots in the top six of the current Commonwealth rankings (with thanks to Arnold Black for this information).
‘We are excited about the size of the team – and also the potential in the coming years,’ said Maguire, scottishathletics director of coaching.
‘It is a large team and, in my opinion, it is a nice reflection on where the sport is headed in Scotland.
‘To have 30 athletes aged 23 or under- (36 are 25 and under) – I think also looks very encouraging for the future.
‘Athletes, coaches and clubs have responded to the publication of the standards back in April 2012 and worked very hard to try and reach their goal.
‘I would like to congratulate each and every single athlete named because we know how many years of hard work and commitment has been put in to achieve selection for Scotland.
‘If you look at the endurance events then, right across the board, we are covered in every one of them with at least one male or female athlete. I believe that shows the work that has been done on endurance over a number of years. That diligence is starting to pay off and bear fruit.
‘We are very well represented in the throws and we have some potential medallists in that event group; we’ve six high jumpers and three in pole vault.’
With nobody making the standards in the mainstream sprints (three did in Para), the event breakdown in full is as follows:
Read a blog post from Stephen Maguire here: https://www.scottishathletics.org.uk/idex.php?p=181&itemType=news&itemId=7805