'There was someone helping Callum Hawkins and that's why I continued' – Michael Shelley on marathon controversy

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Michael Shelley says he did not stop to assist Callum Hawkins during the Commonwealth Games men’s marathon because he saw the Scot being treated.

Hawkins, 25, collapsed while leading just over a mile from the end after succumbing to the hot conditions.

Australian Shelley, 34, went on to win and successfully defend his gold medal.

“When I got to the Sundial Bridge that was the first time I’d seen Callum and he was with a medical official,” Shelley told BBC Scotland.

“To me that was the sign that something had happened and he was getting looked after so for me that was a sign – ‘okay you can continue’.

“I didn’t see what happened, the incident, until post-race, when I was shown I was like, ‘that doesn’t look good at all’ so I reached out to Callum that night to see how he was, if he wanted to catch-up. He responded, said he was doing well. It’s great seeing him back running races, getting back to full fitness.

“If I had seen something and there were no officials around of course you’re going to do something to help, that’s the person I think I am, I’m willing to help people. That’s one thing I want to get across – I’m not a seriously bad person. There was someone helping Callum and that’s why I continued on.”

Shelley said the fallout from the incident had taken the sheen of his victory “a little bit”.

“You’ve got to move forward,” he said. “You can’t change anything, it’s happened. Callum’s moved on, I’ve moved on and we’re doing the best we can to achieve our goals that we’ve set ourselves now.

“I’m moving forward and hopefully everyone can as well.”

Michael Shelley

And Shelley said of some of the comments made on social media: “It gets to you.

“It’s people’s opinions so you can’t change their opinions but having such a great group of family and friends I’m forever thankful for them.

“I just want to say I’m not the person you probably think I am by doing that. I feel that I am a fair decent person but you’ve made that decision. I made the decision knowing that Callum was getting attention, was receiving medical attention.

“I hope there’s no hard feelings. There’s definitely no hard feelings from my part – Callum’s a great guy.”

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BBC Sport – Athletics

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