All roads lead to Glasgow today as the 2014 Commonwealth Games kicks off in earnest with a record total of 12 Borders athletes representing the region over six sports.
Guy Learmonth (athletics 800m and 4x400m relay), Chris O’Hare (athletics 1500m), Libby Clegg (athletics T12 100m), Samantha Kinghorn (athletics T54 1500m), Jak Scott (swimming 4x200m relay), Lucy Hope (swimming 4x200m relay), Jo Pettitt (netball), Sarah Robertson (hockey), Grant Ferguson (mountain bike/road racing), and Stuart Hogg, Scott Wight and Lee Jones (rugby sevens) will all be in action over the next 11 days.
Also heading west are dozens more Borderers who will be involved in everything from meet-and-greet to officiating at one of the biggest rugby sevens tournaments in the world.
Andrew McMenemy and Iain Heard from Gala, David Crudge from Hawick and David Changleng from Peebles/Gala will run the touch at Ibrox Stadium on Saturday and Sunday, while John Montgomery from Peebles is a timekeeper at the event.
At the age of 60, John is the senior member of the squad of Borders officials and is responsible for keeping the clock in order during the games.
“It is essential that the timing is accurate at these events because every second at the end of a game counts,” said John who has four years of IRB Sevens experience behind him.
Along with John, David Crudge, 41, and Iain, 45, have never officiated at a Commonwealth Games before, while David Changleng, 44, and Andrew, 29, held assistant referee roles in Manchester 2002 and Delhi 2010 respectively.
Changleng, who has tickets for some of the hockey and athletics events, told The Southern: “The people of Scotland have really bought into these Commonwealth Games and I think they are something that we can all really be proud of.
“I’m really looking forward to supporting some of the local athletes while I am there.”
All five rugby officials were present at yesterday’s opening ceremony.
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