The 150th National Track and Field championships were dogged by very strong winds and occasional squally showers which meant that personal bests and qualifications for international championships were never likely but they burst to life in the concentrated final couple of hours of track finals.

The men's 5,000 metres was as good as it gets. Three laps in, Efrem Gidey, the national 5K champion on the road, injected some serious pace and after he briefly opened up a 10-metre lead - the field of 22 was splintered with a lead group of seven. Darragh McElhinney, the 21-year old who won silver at last December's European Under-23 cross country championships, always looked comfortable.

When the lead group was down to three, McElhinney was still there, a stride behind Gidey with Hiko Tonosa in third. McElhinney made his move with 270 metres to go and while Tonosa tried to go with him he never drew level and McElhinney looked like a racing thoroughbred as he stopped the clock at 13:53.84. The future is bright for the man from Glengarriff.

Sophie Becker, second from right, dips for the line to win the women's 400m

Another gripping finish came in the women's 400 metres which was, as predicted, a close one between Sophie Becker and Phil Healy. Becker went out really hard over the first 250 and her strength down the home straight was just enough to hold off Healy. With Chris O'Donnell impressing again in winning the men's 400 metres (46.82) ahead of Marcus Lawler, the Irish squad for the mixed 4x400 metres which reached the final at the Tokyo Olympics is looking promising for the summer championships.

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The women's 100 metres was billed as a showdown between Rhasidat Adeleke and Molly Scott who were trading best times in the 60 metres indoors in the spring. Scott made a good start, Adeleke a bad one and to the naked eye it looked for all the world that Scott had held her off but the replay showed that Adeleke timed her dip to perfection to win by one one-hundredth of a second, clocking 11.68.

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Israel Olatunde took his expected gold in the men's 100 metres for the second year in a row (10.51) and in the right conditions, the 20-year old could threaten Paul Hession's 15-year old national record (10.18).

Mark English was looking for his eighth title over 800 metres and to dethrone last year's winner John Fitzsimons. English tracked him for most of the race and took the lead round the home bend and finished strongly to take it in 1:48.46. A European outdoor medallist as far back as 2014, English intends heading to the World Championships in Oregon next month and the Europeans in Munich in August.