"Or is she? Or is she" - Greg Allen's frantic commentary perfectly captures Louise Shanahan's outstanding run 5 months ago

"Or is she? Or is she" - Greg Allen's frantic commentary perfectly captures Louise Shanahan's outstanding run

Greg Allen could barely contain himself.

Alongside him, his co-commentator David Matthews could only laugh. What a moment that was. Leevale's Louise Shanahan has been in the form of her life recently but this, as one of the toughest races she's ever ran, in one of the most stacked fields she's ever come across, was out on its own.


And there could yet be more to come.

Louise Shanahan ran the the race of her life in the European 800m semi-final on Friday morning and that's how, after a brave start and a gutsy finish, she has qualified for Saturday night's final.

But first let's appreciate what she did on Friday.

In Britain's Keely Hodgkinson and Turkey's Ekaterina Guliyeva, Shanahan had two Olympic silver medallists to contend with, along with a host of other top-ranked runners but the 25-year-old from Cork mixed it with the best of them.


Hodgkinson, the red-hot favourite to win the title, stole away down the home straight with Poland's Anna Wielgosz in close pursuit but Shanahan was the best of the rest, and that was how she sealed an automatic spot in the decider.

"This is such a brave run," roared an overjoyed Greg Allen, as the Irish athlete powered down the home straight.

"Louise Shanahan is running the race of her absolute life," he continued, "or is she? Or is she?" he exclaimed as the home favourite Majtie Kolberg chased her down.

But Shanahan had enough in the tank and Allen and Matthews and the all of us could breathe a sigh of relief.


"I cannot emphasise enough how brave that was," added Allen. "There she is, so delighted, the joy and delight on her face, it's a wonderful, wonderful moment for her, she's into the final and with her ability to run tactically, you just never know."

The Irish women's 4 x 400m relay team kept the flag flying high just a few minutes later, when they ran an national record to qualify for tomorrow's final. Rhasidat Adeleke, as we've by now come to expect, ran an outstanding leg while Phil Healy, Sharlene Mawdsley and Sophie Becker all held up their end of the bargain.


That team is certainly in with a medal chance, especially when you consider that Mawdsley slowed up before the line to conserve energy.