Carrying the Games baton

Commonwealth Games baton carrier Jamie Rankin from Bellshill Academy
Commonwealth Games baton carrier Jamie Rankin from Bellshill Academy
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A number of local people with sporting connections have been chosen as Queen’s Baton Bearers for the Commonwealth Games relay.

They will each carry the baton for a section of the route which will take it 190,000 kilometres over 288 days, arriving at Celtic Park for the opening ceremony on July 23.

Although the relay is missing out Bellshill, the town will have some involvement after Bellshill Academy pupil Jamie Rankin was among those chosen.

Jamie, regarded as a very proactive and hardworking pupil within the Academy, has given up his own time to help with the S2 football team, taking training sessions and coaching games.

He also competes with the school rugby team and has captained the side on many occasions.

For work experience Jamie chose to work with his local amateur swimming club. He carried out every task to the highest standard and even worked late on several nights to help coach primary children.

Another carries with a Bellshill connection is Linzi Franks who, although from Larkhall, is a swimming coach at Bellshill Sharks ASC.

The club, based at the Sir Matt Busby Sports Complex, caters for around 150 swimmers from the Bellshill area, including Linzi’s own two children who are both members.

Uddingston Hockey Club will also be represented after the club’s head of youth, Ross McWilliams, was honoured with selection.

Also confirmed as one of the baton bearers is Olivia McMahon, a pupil of Our Lady’s High School in Motherwell.

Olivia was nominated after a review of a long list of potential names from the school.

She has been heavily involved with sport since she started at Our Lady’s and is also one of the school’s sports ambassadors.

And Clyde Valley High were delighted to learn that Eilidh Murray of fifth year will also be one of the relay team carrying the Commonwealth Message to the Glasgow 2014 opening ceremony.

A champion swimmer, and one of the school’s sports leaders, Eilidh was nominated by members of the pupil council in recognition of her outstanding work in promoting sport across the school and within the wider community.

She will enjoy her moment in the Commonwealth Games spotlight when the baton passes through the Wishaw area on Monday, June 23.