Mark English wins Ireland’s first medal at European Indoor Championships

Netherlands' Thijmen Kupers (left) and Ireland's Mark English
Netherlands' Thijmen Kupers (left) and Ireland's Mark English

Mark English landed Ireland’s first medal at the European Indoor Championships as he timed his finish to perfection to take silver in the 800 metres in Prague.

The 21-year-old, a European bronze medallist outdoors last summer, chased down Thijmen Kupers and dipped to cross the line in one minute 47.20 seconds, edging out the Dutchman by 0.05secs.

Poland’s Marcin Lewandowski was the convincing winner in 1:46.67.

Scotland’s Guy Learmonth faded to finish last in 1:47.84.

English said: “I had a lot of energy at the end. I was trying to keep in line and keep in touch with Lewandowski because he is very hard to pass.

“The first two laps were close to 50 seconds, so quite fast, but I kept accelerating and found the energy.

“Also we did not have much time to relax. Usually there is a day’s rest between the semi-finals and finals in the outdoor season, but I have to get used to it.

“I will celebrate tonight because you do not get a medal every season.”