ATHLETICS: Ciara Mageean claims superb bronze medal at European Championships

Ciara Mageean
Ciara Mageean
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Portaferry’s Ciara Mageean produced a superb run to claim bronze in the 1500m at the European Championships.

Mageean secured third place in 4:33.78 behind surprise Polish winner Angelika Cichocka (4:33.00).

The success earned Mageean her first medal at senior international level.

“If I had a clear run on the home straight I think it would have been a different story,” Mageean said.

“For me, it’s a fantastic place to be, to be a little bit disappointed with a medal in the European seniors.

“I’m ecstatic with a little bit of disappointment. That’s a testament to any athlete who wants to do even better than they have.

“I wanted to run the shortest race, get the inside line but that means it can be messy.”

Meanwhile, Mageean’s fellow County Down runner Kerry O’Flaherty finished 12th in the women’s 3,000m steeplechase final in Amsterdam.

Elsewhere, Ireland men’s 4x400m relay squad endured Olympic heartbreak as their fifth place in the final saw them missing out on Rio qualification by 0.20 seconds.

The Irish needed to better Japan’s time of 3:04.12 to earn a spot in the world’s top 16 ranking which would have guaranteed a place in Rio.