Great Edinburgh cross country: Great Britain beaten by Europe

Highlights: Great Edinburgh cross country

Great Britain were beaten in the team event at the Great Edinburgh Cross Country as European captain Fionnuala Britton led her team to victory.

The Irish European cross country champion retained her Edinburgh title, with Britain's Jess Coulson in fourth.

GB led going into the women's race but were beaten by Europe's 154 points to their 175, with USA third.

Brits Andy Vernon and Tom Humphries finished third and fourth respectively in the men's race.

Britton became the first woman to retain the European cross country title in December and repeated the feat here despite slipping in a stream on the last lap of the 6km race at Holyrood Park.

The 28-year-old former steeplechaser was never threatened by the rest of field and finished comfortably ahead of her European team-mate Adrienne Herzog of the Netherlands and Mattie Suver of the USA.

Britton said: "I didn't think it would be like that. Everyone was holding back and no-one really came up so I had to push on from there."

"We weren't in first place going into the last race so it's nice to win."

Coulson, 22, backed up her European Under-23 cross country title with a good performance in a strong senior field.

Britain's Julia Bleasdale finished in 8th - the same position she achieved in both the 5,000m and 10,000m at the Olympics.

Staffordshire's Humphries ran an impressive race in the men's 8km, leading for three laps before being overtaken with 400m to go.

USA's Bobby Mack won the race ahead of Ayad Lamdassem of Spain, in a reversal of last year's top two.

Despite being overrun in the end Humphries was pleased with his performance.

Meseret Defar wins 5,000m

He said: "That's where I want to be, challenging the world's top athletes."

Great Britain's junior women had given their team a real chance of victory in the second of the four races that counted towards the team's total. The top six finishers were British with Emelia Gorecka winning ahead of Jess Judd, with Rebecca Weston in third.

Jonathan Davies was the top British finisher in the junior men's race in fourth.

In an invitation women's 3km race, Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba showed her potential on the senior stage, winning the race ahead of Olympic 5,000m champion Meseret Defar, also of Ethiopia.

Dibaba, the 2010 world junior champion over 5,000m, is the younger sister of three-time Olympic champion Tirunesh Dibaba.

Emily Stewart finished sixth for Great Britain with Lisa Dobriskey, the 2009 world silver medallist over 1500m, just behind her in seventh.

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