MAX Davis will create a little piece of history next month when he becomes the first male member of Avon Valley Runners to win an international vest.

The 17-year-old was this week named in the England U20 men’s team for the Oderzo 10k, just north east of Venice, on May 5.

“I didn’t think I had that much chance of getting selected, so this has come as a real shock to me,” said Davis.

“My coach, Steve Williams, put me forward and we thought I might have an outside chance, but when I received the email saying I had been picked, it was such a surprise.

“It sounds amazing – and I still cannot believe it.”

Coach Steve Williams put forward Davis’ name after he ran an impressive time of 31mins 20secs on his debut over 10k in Telford before Christmas as that fulfilled the criteria set down by the England selectors.

Williams said: “I said to Max after the race that in 2019 he would have a chance of winning an England vest but it has just come quicker than either of us expected.

“I am so pleased for him as he works really hard. I had Ruth Barnes win her first international vest in her 30s, and now at the other end of the age spectrum, Max has won his aged just 17.

“To cap it all he will be the first man from AVR to be selected for his country, so that is a great achievement.”

Davis has enjoyed a solid winter, finishing 31st in the English National Cross Country Championships, 40th in the Inter Counties and 22nd in the South of England Championships.

Davis said: “The selectors told me they were looking at head-to-head performances against rivals in my own age group, but I still feel that that Telford 10k is the best race I have done yet.

“It is a great honour to win my first England vest.”