Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Big Names Missed the Boat - Holmes; Snub Seen as Lost Opportunity

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Big Names Missed the Boat - Holmes; Snub Seen as Lost Opportunity

Article excerpt

KELLY Holmes insists the stayaway stars who snubbed the Delhi Commonwealth Games will have been made to regret their decision after two weeks of successful competition in the Indian capital.

Phillips Idowu, Jessica Ennis, Mo Farah and Victoria Pendleton were among the big names who withdrew for a variety of reasons as fears grew over the Indians' ability to host the event.

In their absence new stars such as 200m and heptathlon gold medallists Leon Baptiste and Louise Hazel emerged and Holmes is convinced their experiences will leave them in a much better position to move towards London 2012.

Holmes said: "It's a shame that a lot of big names didn't take part because they didn't think these Games would be as successful as they have been, but I think it's proved everybody wrong.

"I have to say a lot of those who didn'turn up are probably regretting not coming out and being a part of a successful team. I think the Commonwealth Games is a huge stepping stone and platform. For you to do well here it elevates your confidence and belief that you can take it to the next stage - to the Olympic Games and beyond.

"By not having some of the top names in some of the sports here, others have got medals who have never had that platform before. Now they're the champions and they're the ones to look out for in the future. …

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