Glasgow 2014: Pub landlord Harry Creevy targets eighth Games

By Mark EdwardsBBC Sport
Harry Creevy
Creevy will be competing in his eighth Games in Glasgow and says he "would love to finish with a medal for the Isle of Man"

Walk into the Albert Hotel in the Isle of Man capital of Douglas and you may find one of the Commonwealth Games' most experienced competitors.

The pub's landlord, 58-year-old Harry Creevy, has been balancing his time between pulling pints and training for his eighth successive Games.

Rifle shooter Creevy made his debut at the Edinburgh Games in 1986 and said Glasgow will be the "final chapter" of his epic journey.

"I started in Scotland and will finish in Scotland," he said. "It completes my journey, I guess, and I've enjoyed every one.

"It has gone full circle and I would love to finish with a medal for the Isle of Man."

Creevy will be contesting the 50m prone rifle event, where shooters get 50 minutes to fire 60 shots at a target 50 metres away, with the 10 score about the size of half a 5p coin.

And he will be hoping to emulate fellow Manxman and Glasgow flagbearer Tim Kneale, who won bronze in the double trap event in Delhi four years ago.

"If it was easy I wouldn't do it," said Creevy, whose event's qualification round begins on Monday.

Harry Creevy
Creevy has represented Great Britain at European and World Cup events since the mid-1990s

"I love the challenge. I still get nervous but I have plenty of experience to draw upon and hopefully I can pass it on to the rest of the Manx team.

"It is a big lift having the big names in the team but I can play my part and help the younger athletes.

"I have loved watching the younger ones progress through and go on to do such incredible things but I can still give them a run for their money."

Creevy first represented the Isle of Man in 1979 and has competed for Great Britain since 1995 at European and World Cup events.

He has made several finals and set a British record in Victoria, Canada, in 1994, after which he contemplated calling it a day on his sport.

"I had a good Games in Victoria and was thinking about retiring as I had so much else going on in my life and that is when Britain came calling."

He has been representing GB in both the 50m and 300m prone rifle events ever since.

"I started shooting at club level initially, then all of a sudden I was competing internationally for Great Britain all over the world.

"It is difficult to run the pub and train but I have understanding staff and they know I have to dash off.

Harry Creevy
The pub landlord trains in St John's with the Isle of Man shooting team

"When I was chasing the Olympic place in the 1990s I would have loved to be able to train full-time but it isn't that easy.

"Every time we go, the Manx team gets stronger and it's been an honour to be part of that, especially carrying the flag in 2006.

"I will not go to the closing ceremony because it is the end of this chapter for me."

The Commonwealth Games is the highest level at which a Manx sportsperson can represent the island, and Creevy is hoping he can finish his career with a flourish.

"I feel honoured to have taken part in the Commonwealth Games over the years and represented my country.

"I am hoping to get into the top eight in Glasgow which would give me a medal opportunity.

"It would be the perfect end to my last year competing at international level."

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