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Smith raises the bar with another Scottish record

HE may have set a native record of 2.22m in the high jump a fortnight ago at the Scottish Universities and Colleges Championships, but clearly that wasn't good enough for Allan Smith.

Allan Smith jumping at the Emirates Arena   Photograph: Stewart Attwood
Allan Smith jumping at the Emirates Arena Photograph: Stewart Attwood

Yesterday saw him better that with another record, this time of 2.23m at the British Athletics International Match in Glasgow.

He finished fourth overall in a world class high jump field which included eventual winner Aleksey Dmitrik (RUS) and Olympic bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz (GBR), who took second.

"The difference in standard between today and the Scottish Universities and Colleges Championships was incredible," said Smith. "Having a home crowd behind me was amazing. I jumped 2.23m and came close to doing 2.26m today. I did have a bit of a shaky start. It was the highest start height I've ever had at 2.10m."

Scottish Paralympic medallist Stefanie Reid claimed victory in the women's F44/46 long jump.

Her longest jump of the day was 4.90m, but ever the perfectionist Reid, 28, said she was looking to build on that in the coming months.

"I'm satisfied. My coach Keith Antoine gave me a high five for landing five out of six jumps and not fouling, which is quite impressive for me," she said. "Overall I'm pleased. I really wanted to be over five metres, but it's only a number. It's good to be a perfectionist, but at the same time you need to chill out and celebrate a bit."

Scottish sprinter and Paralympic medallist Libby Clegg had to compete alone in her 60m event after her guide runner Mikail Huggins was forced to pull out with a hamstring injury.

Clegg, 22, suffers from the deteriorating eye condition Stargardt Macular Dystrophy, giving her only slight peripheral vision in her left eye.

"It's much more difficult when I'm at top speed without a guide," said Clegg. "I can train on my own, but when I race my guide is my confidence and eyes. I said to Mikail it felt really weird not having my guide, I felt a bit naked without it. Although I train on my own, it is vital when I compete. I can't see the finish line, so it's a confidence thing. When I'm running with Mikail he tells me where I am on the track and when I need to adapt my technique."

The pair made the decision only an hour before the event as they felt it may have potentially compromised the rest of the season had Huggins competed and further aggravated his injury.

"I'm gutted, but so proud she was able to go out there and run the way she did," he said.

The last time Clegg had competed without a guide was as a youngster when she still had some of her vision. With family and friends in the packed arena, she was determined to run. "I could have pulled out, but I wanted to race," she said. "I didn't want to miss the opportunity as we don't often get to come to events where this many people come out to watch."

She finished in third and final place overall with Terezinha Guilhermina (BRA) taking the victory and Hanka Kolnikova (SVK) in seconde.

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