TYTHERINGTON-BASED runner Dan Studley is looking forward to representing England at an international event for the first time this weekend.

The 20-year-old has been called up to the senior squad for the Burgos Cross Country International in Spain after making giant strides forward in the last 18 months.

Studley only made his regional debut when he represented the Midlands at the Home Countries International at Rouken Glen in March, finishing 26th in 24:44.

After a good summer on the track, he impressed by finishing sixth on the first leg ERRA Men’s 6 stage Relays, to help Bristol & District AC finish tenth as the 12th fastest runner overall and second under-23, and then came third at the Gwent League meeting in Bridgend to earn a call-up.

“I never thought I’d be selected but I’m really excited,” said Studley.

“This year I’ve made a huge improvement culminating in this.

“I wasn’t competitive in cross country last year, but I did well when I represented the Midlands at the British Championships, so in the last 18 months I’ve been moving forward really well.

“England tend to favour under-23s because they want to give you a chance to compete against international athletes.”

Studley will be up against top professionals in Burgos, with last year’s entry list including Ethiopian Tariku Bekele, who finished second and went onto win bronze behind Mo Farah in the 10,000m at the London 2012 Olympics.