FORMER world champion, Paula Radcliffe, has thrown her weight behind the idea that Scotland should send their own teams to some international events, rather than always have to hope for GB selection.

There has been suggestions by Scottish Athletics that the home countries should send teams to events like the European XC Championships and Radcliffe believes this would be a significant step forward in developing the sport in this country.

“I absolutely think this idea could work for the Euro Cross,’ said Radcliffe.

“With the depth of medals British teams have achieved, and the success there’s been over the recent years, it is fair to say the event has become dominated by GB.

“I think this way it would spread it out a bit and give a platform to other Scottish, English, Northern Irish and Welsh athletes to move into teams and gain some experience of international cross country.”

The former marathon world record holder believes if more athletes could gain international experience, it could significantly boost their careers.

“That is what the Euro Cross should really be about – an opportunity for athletes from European countries to gain experience of international competition before then looking to move up to the World Cross or to the Olympics and Worlds on the track,” the Englishwoman said.

“Clearly it would open that door for a number of other athletes from around Britain to get that chance and I think fundamentally that would be a good thing.”