London 2012: Dai Greene leads record Welsh Olympic team

Dai Greene

World champion Dai Greene will lead the Welsh contingent in Team GB's athletics team as Wales will send a record number of competitors to the London Olympics.

Greene is joined in the 71-strong squad by countrymen fellow 400m hurdler Rhys Williams, sprinter Christian Malcolm and discus thrower Brett Morse.

Now 28 Welsh participants have been named for the 2012 Games - beating the 27 sent to the 1908 London Games.

But 800m runner Gareth Warburton, who ran the Olympic A standard, misses out.

Andrew Osagie, who won the 800m at last month's Olympic trials in Birmingham, is confirmed in the Team GB track and field squad alongside Michael Rimmer.

UK Athletics Head Coach Charles Van Commenee has stated a target of eight medals - including at least one gold - from his team, which also includes the six marathon runners that had already been selected.

Van Commenee's tally would not only double the four medals won at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but would represent Team GB's best result since the 1988 Seoul Olympics when a squad featuring Daley Thompson, Linford Christie, Steve Cram and Welsh 100m hurdler Colin Jackson won eight medals.

Greene, the world and Commonwealth champion, and Malcolm, who is preparing for his fourth Olympic Games, when Greene won the 400m hurdles and Malcolm finished second in the 200m.

Williams sealed the third 400m hurdles place alongside Greene and Jack Green by last Friday where he ran the Olympic 'A' qualifying standard for a second time.

Both reigning outdoor world champions Greene and long-distance runner Mo Farah will represent Team GB in London and will be joined by former world champion and current double world silver medallist heptahlete Jessica Ennis, who is one 47 Olympic debutants in the squad.

Commonwealth bronze medallist Malcolm, who captained Team GB to their most successful World Championships in 2011, will join Beijing silver medallist long-jumper Philips Idowu at his fourth Olympic Games.

The 33-year-old from Newport will join James Ellington in the 200m and Malcolm is also picked for the 4x100m relay despite dropping the baton during the men's 4x100m final at the European Championships on the weekend.

He joins Ellington, Adam Gemili, James Dasaolu and the recalled Dwain Chambers, who can compete after the British Olympic Association policy of , in the relay squad.

Morse is picked for his first Olympics despite not gaining the Olympic 'A' qualifying standard but the Cardiff athlete's second placed finish at the trials was enough for qualification.

Warburton, on the other hand, did run the Olympic 'A' standard but missed out on a discretionary place as the Caernarfon 800m runner needed to hit the required standard twice and he finished just fourth at the Birmingham trials.

Greene and Williams will start their Olympic bid on the opening day of athletics events on 3 August at the Olympic Stadium before the 400mh final on 6 August.

Malcolm will look improve on two fifth placed Olympic final finishes when the 200m starts on 7 August, before the 9 August final, while Morse begins on 6 August.

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