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One more Commonwealth Games chance for Norfolk marksman and record-chasing Mick Gault

PUBLISHED: 08:19 23 April 2014 | UPDATED: 08:50 23 April 2014

Mick Gault in Holland at the weekend

Mick Gault in Holland at the weekend

Archant

England’s most decorated athlete Mick Gault has made a return to his country’s team as he bids to become the most successful Commonwealth Games competitor of all time.

Gault, who has won 17 medals, gave up after Delhi 2010, but has been tempted out of retirement by the prospect of passing the magic mark of 18.

• So who is Mick Gault?

The veteran Dereham marksman is one of 14 athletes named in the first wave of shooting selections that encompasses the full bore, small bore – rifle and small bore pistol squad. The remainder of the group will be selected at a later date.

Gault said of his small bore pistol selection: “I am delighted to be representing England at the Commonwealth Games for the sixth time and I can’t wait to get out there and compete for my country.

“I know there will be talk of records as there was in Delhi, but that’s not why I’m here. I’m here because I love shooting and I love the Commonwealth Games and the opportunity to compete at the very highest level in the UK was too good to miss. This is about going out in front of big home crowds and enjoying my sport.

“I’m definitely the old boy of the team but training has been going very well and I hope I’ll keep the youngsters on their toes.”

Team England Chef de Mission Jan Paterson said: “It’s great to see the mix of youth and experience in this squad and I’m delighted to welcome the first of Team England athletes for Glasgow 2014 on St George’s Day.”

The Glasgow Games begins on July 23 and ends on August 3.

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Opinion: It’s been a very eventful few days for Norwich City, and it all started with that brilliant 1-0 win at Ashton Gate. This win was thanks to another wonderful James Maddison goal and one hell of a save by Angus Gunn, one his old man I’m sure would have been proud to make. Sadly Norwich went out of the FA Cup at the third round stage for the fourth consecutive season, but gave a magnificent account of themselves and pushed Chelsea all the way – but it wasn’t to be as they were knocked out in the cruellest way, on penalties. The win against Bristol City means the club have won nearly twice as many away games as they have done at Carrow Road, Norwich are now unbeaten in their last four league games while conceding just one goal in those four games. Saturday gives City an opportunity to win back-to-back league games for the first time at Carrow Road this season, which is quite astounding considering we’re now in mid-January. I guess it just goes to show how they’ve struggled to break teams down and how inconsistent they have been on their own patch. Chris Wilder brings his out-of-sorts Sheffield United down to Carrow Road – I’m sure he’ll get a nice warm welcome from the Norwich faithful after some of the remarks he made after Norwich’s very impressive win at Bramall Lane in a bad-tempered game earlier in the season when the Blades we’re flying in the league, something they aren’t quite doing at this moment in time, having won just one of their last 10 Championship games. I think tomorrow gives the lads a real chance of closing the gap even more on the teams in those play-off positions. I scored a few goals against Sheffield United in my career, especially when I played at Bramall Lane – a brace for Leicester springs to mind. I scored a couple for Norwich against them at Carrow Road and looking back on my 96 goals for the Canaries, one of those was one of the most important that I scored for the club. The first of those two City goals came in a thrilling game when we found ourselves 2-0 with just 24 minutes gone, but we made the boos and the jeers turn to cheers with goals from Phil Mulryne, Tony Cottee (his one and only for Norwich), Chris Llewelyn and yours truly seeing us make a tremendous comeback to win the game 4-2. The other goal I was talking about came in our Championship-winning season on January 31 and, as I said, it’s right up there with some of the most important goals I scored for the club. It was a top-of-the-table clash as both us and Sheffield United had had a very good first half to the season and were fighting it up at the top of the league. It was a very close game with not many clear-cut chances until a ball broke to me in the 59th minute. It came to me perfectly, about 12 yards from goal and without breaking my stride I smashed it past the helpless Paddy Kenny and Carrow Road erupted. It was a very important win for us and as a forward there’s no better result than winning the game 1-0 with you getting the winner. I’d like to take this opportunity to wish both Russell Martin and Cameron Jerome all the very best at their new clubs. Both have been magnificent servants to the club and have been ultimate professionals while they’ve represented Norwich City and have always given everything when they’ve played. Both have taken harsh criticism in the last two or three seasons and at times been made scapegoats, but one thing is for sure, they’ve never hidden and taken everything on the chin and got on with things. Let’s hope that whoever comes in to replace Russ and Cameron will show the same level of commitment to Norwich City over the next few years.

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