Scottish athlete 'sitting up and talking' after Commonwealth Games marathon collapse

Marathon leader hospitalised after heartbreaking collapse

CALLUM Hawkins said thank you from his hospital bed for all the support and medical attention he had received since dramatically collapsing when leading the Commonwealth Games marathon - as an almighty row began over whether the games organisers had jeopardised his health with their on- course procedures to battle the searing temperatures.

After two hours in the blazing sun, Scotland's Callum Hawkins had pushed himself to the limit, leaving the rest of the field in his wake and establishing a commanding 41-second lead. However, his uprightness did not last long as he again fell, this time hitting his head on a rail by the roadside.

Paula Radcliffe, who had to drop out of the 2004 Olympic marathons in Athens in the late stages, tweeted: "Big questions for the LOC [local organising committee] and medical care". "That should never happen", she said.

Many are outraged that it took so long for official medical help to arrive and that the spectators didn't help (one even pushed him back onto the course and others simply stood there and took pictures of a collapsed Hawkins), but it could be that many were anxious that if they did help, Hawkins would be DQ'd.

"I wasn't sure what was going on", the Australian said, about seeing Hawkins in trouble.

This is a guy in real distress and someone needs to recognise it.

Seven of the 24 starters failed to complete the race, including Tanzania's Saidi Juma Makula, who collapsed close to the finish line before being helped into an ambulance. "I think it's disgraceful".

Mark Peters, chief executive of the local organizing committee, said they would be investigating whether there had been an excessive delay in getting help to Hawkins.

Here's the Team Scotland statement regaring Callum Hawkins.

Later the team announced that Hawkins was "sitting up and speaking with his Dad and Team Scotland medical staff".

"And finally somebody arrives. You can't have medical people on every kilometer of the road". The health of the athlete is absolutely prime.

"I was also concerned about the behaviour of a small number of bystanders who chose to take images", he said.

Callum Hawkins was in first place when he collapsed.

In an earlier comment to the media, Peters said: "We need to check the facts out".

"Sometimes medical people arrive and the athlete has to make a decision as to whether they want to go on or not. This is not in keeping with the spirit of Gold Coast 2018". I was thinking that I wanted to get to the end just so I can be part of the Scottish team and do the whole team proud.

Viewers took to Twitter to voice their dismay at the way the athlete was treated with one user calling the scenes "distressing", writing: "No medics for ages and the woman just taking pics of him in a heap on the floor, not even trying to help him just taking photos, so shocking!"

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