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OLYMPICS: Call for Danny is the game changer
WHEN Danny Talbot received the phone call that would reveal his Olympic destiny on Tuesday morning, it was one of the most nerve-wracking experiences of his life.
Just three days after winning his first-ever senior medal with 200m bronze at the European Championships in Helsinki, the 21-year-old sprint star was able to breathe a sigh of relief as he earned his dream call-up into the Team GB 4x100m relay squad.
Talbot, dubbed the Trowbridge Tornado’ will race alongside Adam Gemili, Dwain Chambers, James Dasaolu, Christian Malcolm, James Ellington, Simeon Williamson and Mark Lewis-Francis.
The new Olympian said: “The relay coach Tony Lester phoned me and he started the conversation with ‘I’ve been phoning people that haven’t made it and have made it.’ “I was thinking that I hadn’t got in – but he said ‘well done, you’ve made the 4x100m team’.
“I was in the living room at home and my sister (Michelle, 25) heard me pick up the phone.
“She was mouthing to me to try and find out whether I was in or not and from there, it was just brilliant.
“I just sat there for a few seconds and thought ‘oh my God, I’m going to the Olympics’ – then I phoned my mum (Margaret), my dad (Richard), and my coach (Dan Cossins).
“Out of the eight guys in the squad, only Adam Gemili and James Dasaolu have got faster 100m times than me, so I feel like I’m in a strong position at the moment, especially with that European medal.”
After failing to run the Olympic A standard time of 20.55 seconds this season, Talbot didn’t receive a call-up for the third individual 200m spot, with UK Athletics only selecting Ellington and Malcolm.
However, the Wiltshire ace revealed that the athletics bosses were keen to pick him, but their hands were tied.
“I technically haven’t met the selection criteria so I shouldn’t have been put in it anyway, but Tony Lester and Charles van Commenee (Great Britain head coach) said they tried to get me in,” said Talbot.
“But because Richard Kilty has run two A standards, they knew he’d appeal, which he is doing anyway.
“It would be likely that they’d have had to take me out. To be fair to them, they tried to put me in, which I appreciate, but realistically, they couldn’t.
“It is slightly disappointing but from 2005, my aim was to try and get into the Olympic Games and I’ve achieved it so I’m over the moon.”
After being officially kitted out on July 22, Talbot will fly out to Portugal for a Team GB holding camp a day later.
Before then, he hopes to compete in one more event to impress the UK Athletics bosses.