Eight Home Nations athletes to watch at the Commonwealth Games 2018

Steve Cram picks our best medal hopes

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 21:  Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya, Callum Hawkins of Great Britain and Alemu Bekele of Bahrain compete during the Men's Marathon on Day 16 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Sambodromo on August 21, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Former 1500m world record holder Steve Cram highlights the best of the Home Nations  athletes on show at this year’s Commonwealth games. 

Dina Asher-Smith, 200m

during day four of the Australian Junior Athletics Championships at the Sydney Olympic Park Athletics Centre on March 17, 2018 in Sydney, Australia.

England’s top female sprinter is in great shape. She left the World Indoor Championships in Birmingham early in order to go to Australia to prepare for this. She’ll be up against Elaine Thompson, Jamaica’s double sprint gold medallist from Rio, so it’s going to be tough, but it should be a thriller.

Round one Saturday 7 April BBC1

Adam Peaty, 50m and 100m breaststroke

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 28: Adam Peaty poses during a Team England media opportunity ahead of the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, at Somerville High School on March 28, 2018 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

The world record holder in both, England’s Peaty is nailed on for gold. No one’s unbeatable, but I can only see him rising to the challenge. Australia always expect a lot in the pool and he’ll be desperate to stick it to them in their backyard.

100m heats Thursday 5 April BBC1 50m heats Saturday 7 April BBC1

Andrew Pozzi, 110m hurdles

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 04: Andrew Pozzi of Great Britain celebrates winning the Men's 60m Hurdles Final during Day Four of the IAAF World Indoor Championships at Arena Birmingham on March 4, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)
(Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)

England’s sprint hurdler ran brilliantly at the World Indoors at Birmingham in March to win the 60m hurdles in a personal best time. He’ll get enormous confidence from that — form in the 60m hurdles really does translate to the 110m event. And Andrew’s in great shape.

Round one Sunday 8 April BBC1

Hannah Miley, 400m Individual Medley

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND - APRIL 18: Gold medalist Hannah Miley of Aberdeen Per poses with the medal won in the Womens Open 400m IM final on day one of the British Swimming Championships at Ponds Forge on April 18, 2017 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
(Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

The Scottish swimmer is among the favourites for the 400m Individual medley as she chases a hat-trick of Commonwealth titles, having won gold in both Delhi and Glasgow. The 28-year-old, who grew up in Inverurie, is still the current British record holder.

Heats Wednesday 4 April BBC1

Zoe Smith, Weightlifting (63kg)

HOUSTON, TX - NOVEMBER 25: Zoe Smith of Great Britain competes in the women's 63kg weight class during the 2015 International Weightlifting Federation World Championships at the George R. Brown Convention Center on November 25, 2015 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
(Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Her gold in Glasgow in 2014 in the 58kg class must have seemed a distant memory a couple of years ago as the English weightlifter suffered a shoulder injury that kept her out of Rio and a funding cut saw her working in a café. Still only 23, she has all the motivation to prove she’s back on track.

Final Saturday 7 April BBC1

Dai Greene, 400m hurdles

during day two of the Sainsbury's Anniversary Games at The Stadium - Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on July 25, 2015 in London, England.

Dai’s a big star in Welsh athletics but, at 31, he has had so many injuries over the years that it’s amazing he’s got himself fit. He took himself off to compete in South Africa during the winter and it’s really paid off. The fact he ran 49.5 seconds recently puts him right back in contention.

Round one Monday 9 April BBC1

Callum Hawkins, Marathon

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 21: Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya, Callum Hawkins of Great Britain and Alemu Bekele of Bahrain compete during the Men's Marathon on Day 16 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Sambodromo on August 21, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
(Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Marathon This is a huge opportunity for Scotland. Fourth in the World Championships last year, Callum, 25, has a great racing brain. He’s proved he can compete on the big stage so this won’t faze him. The weather could play a role. The race is scheduled for 8.15am local time, but it will get hotter as it goes on.

Men’s marathon Sat 14 April BBC2

Katarina Johnson-Thompson

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 02: Katarina Johnson-Thompson of Great Britain celebrates winning the Women's Pentathlon during Day Two of the IAAF World Indoor Championships at Arena Birmingham on March 2, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)
(Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images)

England’s heptathlon star has probably the best chance of a gold medal of anyone in the entire home nations’ teams. Winning the pentathlon at the World Indoors last month will have given Kat the confidence to really push on to another level. This is a must-see event.

Wed 11 April to Fri 13 April BBC1

Advertisement