Olympic Stories

Dai Greene - Athletics

Dai Greene - Athletics

Born April 11, 1986, in Felinfoel, Wales, Great Britain, David “Dai” Greene is a world-class hurdler who specializes in the 400 meter event. Dai Green competes internationally, pulling double duty for Wales and for Great Britain, but in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, the talented Greene will don the British colors as he attempts to win gold in an impressive field of world hurdlers.

Dai has had a few major successes in his short career, on top of a slew of minor achievements. In terms of the 400m hurdle event, Greene is the second-fastest Briton to ever clear the event, and he is also the current World, Commonwealth and European champion in the event.

Sporting Career

By the time Dai Greene was in primary school, it was already clear to those around him that the young boy was talented. While attending Pen-y-gaer primary, his hero was Ryan Giggs and Dai would practice playing footy constantly – with his opposite foot. By the time Greene was 13, he was an impressive footballer. Scoring a goal for his Swansea City team against the Real Madrid youth team, Dai stood out in his age range and attracted national attention. He actually turned down a contract to play professionally when he was 16.

Deciding to finish his education, Greene’s hopes of returning to the pitch were dashed when he was diagnosed with Osgood-Schlatter disease – a traction injury that continuously irritates the patellar tendon at the tibial tuberosity. And as if the news couldn’t get any worse for Dai and his football dreams, he was diagnosed with epilepsy at 17 years of age.

Fighting epilepsy and his tendon condition, Dai never gave up on athletics. He moved to Cardiff to train with Benke Blomqvist and took to competing on the junior athletics circuit in 2005. That same year, Greene would win a silver medal in the hurdles at the European Athletics Junior Championships.

In 2007, at the European Athletics U23 Championships, Dai set a new personal best time of 49.58 seconds, and won the gold medal. Shortly after that, Dai’s coach would leave for Sweden and Green would relocate to the University of Bath to train with Malcolm Arnold.

When 2009 rolled around, Greene proved himself on the outdoor circuit. At the Josef Odlozil Memorial event, taking place in Prague, Greene set a new personal best and a new track record of 48.62 in the 400m. Then after joining Team Great Britain later that year, the successes kept on coming, capped off by a gold medal in the European Athletics Championships in 2010, and then another gold medal in the Commonwealth Games that same year.

One of Greene’s most recent big victories, in 2011, came at the World Athletics Championships, where he won yet another gold medal in the 400m event.

Career Highlights

  • 2010 European Athletics Championships – Gold
  • 2010 Commonwealth Games – Gold
  • 2010 Continental Cup – Gold
  • 2011 World Athletics Championships – Gold
  • 2011 European Athletics Championships – Gold

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