SCOTLAND was celebrating a 'stunning' four Commonwealth Games gold medals in less than four hours with one pensioner now believed to have become the event's oldest ever gold medallist.

Elish McColgan's superb 10,000m victory has been described by her mother as "100 times better" than winning the event herself.

But it was para-bowlers Pauline Wilson, 58,  and 72-year-old Dumfries pensioner Rosemary Lenton,  kicked off the gold rush in Birmingham on Wednesday.

Ms Linton, on her Games debut helped Scotland win the Para women's pairs' bowls competition and is believed to have become the Commonwealth Games' oldest gold medallist.

Ken Hanson became Australia’s oldest ever gold medal winner at a Commonwealth Games after making his debut in 2018 at the age of 68. Hanson won gold for his B6/B7/B8 Triples dramatically with the last bowl of the match Ms Lenton only ever imagined going to the Commonwealth Games as a fan.

She said: "I think I am dreaming, to be perfectly honest.


"We always knew we could do it. In the round-robin we didn't always produce it, but when it really mattered we did, and that's the important thing.

"It hasn't quite sunk in yet but this is absolutely fantastic. I never thought I would ever get to a Commonwealth Games and if I did, it would be as a spectator.

"This is effectively our Olympics because we cannot get any higher."

The pair of Lenton and Wilson beat Australia's Cheryl Lindfield and Serena Bonnell 17-5 in the gold medal match at Leamington Spa's Victoria Park.

The pair received congratulations to both from the charity Age Scotland and added: "At 72, Rosemary has become the games’ oldest gold medal winner – proving age is no barrier!"

Ms Lenton, formerly a competitive sailor and cyclist who has done charity rides in China and Russia, suffered complications from a routine surgery two decades ago which led to her requiring a wheelchair.

She suffered an infection during the surgery and underwent nine further operations which meant she was in hospital for three months.

She has also taken up wheelchair curling and competed in nine world championships.


Ms Lenton had been due to go and watch the Games in Manchester in 2002 as a spectator before health problems thwarted her.

"I struggled going back to work for three years before I had to give it up in 2005. I took up bowls, really as a social thing, to get myself out of the house and mix with people," she said.

"When I was at bowls, someone suggested wheelchair curling too. You can't sit at home and wait for the world to come to you, you have to make the effort and go out and meet others."

She needed help just to get to the Games, after the Crichton Royal Bowling club member had to appeal for sponsors just to help her fund the cost of equipment to compete.

Also striking gold was Scotland's Sarah Adlington became the first judoka from the nation to win two Commonwealth Games golds with a gutsy win in the women's +78kg final.

Adlington, 35, won the title at Glasgow 2014 and, after judo was left out of the Gold Coast event in 2018, won again in Birmingham.

"Anything other than gold would have felt like a disaster," she said.

And Glasgow's Duncan Scott added his second gold with a Games record in the 200m individual medley.

He was already Scotland's most decorated Commonwealth athlete of all time as he won his 10th and 11th medal in Birmingham on Monday.


Duncan Scott (right) and Eilish McColgan with their medal haul

Eilish McColgan's gold matched her mother's success in 1986 and 1990 - and with a Games record.

Her mother, Liz, a two-time Commonwealth champion over 10,000m as well as a world champion in 1991 and Olympic silver-medallist in 1988 – was watching track-side. Liz, who coaches her daughter, said: "As an athlete myself you have fond memories of having success and whatever but when it's your own children it's like 100 times better.

"It's just one of those really special moments and I was just thankful I was actually in the stadium and able to experience how the home support helped lift her to that gold medal.

"It was just one of those really, really special moments that probably will never come along again but it was just a great atmosphere and just really exciting and nerve-wracking to be part of it."

Eilish, who has overcome injury and setbacks at major events, said the victory was years in the making.

The 31-year-old said: "I feel like at this stage in my career I'm getting stronger both physically and mentally and I believe that I can do it now."

Eilish, who is scheduled to compete in the 5,000m on Sunday, told the BBC: "It's just nice to know it's heading in the right direction even though I'm getting older I'm definitely still making progress every single year.

"Sadly there won't be any celebrating until the start of October when I finish my season. I also have the 5,000m here on Sunday as well so there' still a huge part of the season left.

"I'll get my chance to celebrate, but another couple of months from now."