Like mother, like daughter: Eilish McColgan's road to Commonwealth Games gold in same event as mother Liz

Mother and daughter embraced at the finish line of the women's 10,000m after one of the most memorable moments in track and field athletics at Birmingham 2022 

By James Pratt
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

On a thrilling night of athletics in England, it may come as a surprise that the biggest cheers in Birmingham's Alexander Stadium were for a Scottish victory.

The story of Eilish McColgan winning the women's 10,000m at the 2022 Commonwealth Games on Wednesday (3rd August) was about more than national rivalries.

Her victory came 36 years after her mother, Liz, won gold in the same race at the Edinburgh 1986 and Auckland 1990 events, and the pair embraced trackside after the win.

Eilish McColgan of Team Scotland celebrates with mother Liz after winning the gold medal in the Women's 10,000m Final at the Commonwealth Games Birmingham 2022 [Picture: Getty Images]
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

"It was really special to have her there for that moment," the younger McColgan told the BBC.

"I grew up with my mum allowing me to make my own decisions.

"She never pushed me into athletics. I never saw her medals. I was never forced to watch her races or anything like that. I made my own decision to come into this sport, and I think that's why I love it so much, I'm very passionate about it."

"I think it's not quite sunk in that I have replicated exactly what she's done. It's very surreal."

It's the first major title for 31-year-old Eilish, who fought off the challenge of Kenya's Irine Cheptai in a sprint finish and her time of 30 minutes, 48.6 seconds is a new Commonwealth Games record for the distance.

Mother Liz, who began her athletics career under her maiden name Lynch, was clearly delighted with her daughter's performance in Birmingham.

"She just ran the race I always knew she was capable of running," she told the BBC.

"It was amazing to watch and very nerve-wracking but it's been a long time coming and she put it together tonight."

Both McColgans have competed on the global stage for Great Britain, with Liz winning Seoul 1988 silver and the 1991 world title.

Eilish is now targeting further success, and possibly emulating her mother again, at the Paris 2024 Games.

How to watch 2022 Commonwealth Games

The Commonwealth Games will be broadcast live in many parts of the world.

UK: BBC TV, BBC iPlayer and BBC website.

Canada: CBC Sports, CBC Sports app

Australia: Channel 7, 7Plus

New Zealand: Sky, TVNZ

India: Sony LIV

Singapore: Mediacorp's free-to-air Channel 5, meWATCH, and YouTube.

Malaysia: RTM

Further TV broadcast and digital live streaming details can be found on the Commonwealth Games website here.

You can follow all the action via our live update blog article on Olympics.com.

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