Glasgow pupil shaves 2014 logo into hair as Games fever mounts

The countdown to the Commonwealth Games stepped up today when the Glasgow 2014 clock was switched on - although it appears even the official timekeepers cannot wait for the big kick-off.

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  • Aaron McLaughlin shows off his new look with Michael Jamieson. Picture by Mark Gibson.
  • Picture by Mark Gibson
  • Picture by Mark Gibson

The huge Longines clock at Glasgow Central train station initially showed there were 128 days to the opening ceremony, before a group of organisers and Scotland medal prospect Michael Jamieson switched it back on a second time to produce the correct 135 days until the July 23 launch at Celtic Park.

The minor glitch failed to dampen the enthusiasm of a number of schoolchildren who helped count down the clock switch-on after swimmer Jamieson earlier visited Hillhead primary school to promote Sport Your Trainers Day.

One school pupil showed his  enthusiasm for the event by shaving the Games logo into his hair. 

Aaron McLaughlin (11), a P7 from St Stephen's Primary School in Sighthill was pictured at the launch with Michael Jamieson showing off his new look.

Glasgow 2014 chairman Lord Smith of Kelvin feels the Games are already inspiring children to embrace sport.

Lord Smith said: "There are youngsters coming on to, for example, the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, and the Emirates Arena, using the very tracks that their great heroes are going to be running on and cycling on in a few months' time.

"It's a kind of legacy now. We have got youngsters involved in sport now, not just after the games. There is no question they are engaging.

"People in Glasgow are very excited. I spent Friday and Saturday at the orientation event for 15,000 volunteers and the excitement generated there was just fantastic. Golly, they are going to make these games something special.

"We actually had 50,000 people apply to be volunteers. That's the same as Manchester and Melbourne put together. We only needed 15,000. Golly, the excitement was tangible. These people are absolutely up for these games.

"This is pretty tangible stuff, you can now see the seconds and minutes clocking up towards the opening of the games. It's tremendously exciting."

Michael Jamieson added: "It's a huge boost to be involved in events like this and it's part of my job as an ambassador to promote the Commonwealth Games. It just brings home to me how fast the clock is ticking to July."

The event coincided with Commonwealth Day and Lord Smith feels people in the 70 competing nations are engaging with the event through the Queen's Baton Relay.

Lord Smith, who is chairman of energy company SSE, said: "I was out in South Africa on business and I was able to speak to people just after the baton had moved through.

"It's now more or less halfway through its journey and comes to Scotland for the last 40-odd days.

"The people out there are engaging - everyone wants to touch the baton. And there is only one baton, this is not lots of flames that are passed around. It's been halfway round the world and everyone wants a part of it."

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