Kilkenny runner Joanne Cuddihy has become the 17th Irish athlete to qualify for the London 2012 Olympics after beating the 400m Olympic qualification time.

Cuddihy of Kilkenny City Harriers ran 51:45 in wet conditions on her way to victory at the Shizuoka International International Track and Field meet in Japan.

Cuddihy will next compete in the Golden Grand Prix in Kawasaki on Sunday where she is hoping to further improve on this time.

There was further good news for Irish atheltics as Mark English (Letterkenny AC) won the 800m at BMC meet in Stretford in a time of 1:48:19, well inside the ‘A’ standard qualifying time for the World Junior Championships.