Some of his illustrious peers might have decided against travelling to India for the upcoming Commonwealth Games, but world and European champion British triple jumper Phillips Idowu has confirmed that he will defend his title at the October 3-14 mega event in Delhi.
Idowu, who won the world title in 2009 and captured gold at the European Championships in Barcelona last week, has said that he will participate in this year's Commonwealth Games despite some of his teammates have decided against the trip due to security fears.
"I'm looking forward to going out and defending my title," said the 31-year-old athlete, who won the gold in Melbourne four years ago, is adamant he will don the England vest in October.
"It's great to pull on an England vest. I won my first major championship gold at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, so the event means a lot to me," the Beijing Olympics silver medallist was quoted as saying by the British media.
The Games has already lost its charm after sprint king Usain Bolt, Jamaican and Olympic 100 metres champion Shelly-Ann Fraser and cyclists Chris Hoy and Bradley Wiggins have decided to give the event a miss for varied reasons.
But Idowu's confirmation will come as a boost for the orgainsers, who are presently facing the heat for shambolic preparations and corruption allegations related to various Games projects with less than two months to go for the event.
Meanwhile, England chef de mission for the Commonwealth Games, Craig Hunter said the event will provide young British athletes a chance to get a feel of multi-discipline events ahead of the 2012 London Olympics.
"We've already got an impressive list of athletes including Olympic and World champions within our team and we're looking forward to adding further team selections in the near future as the countdown to the Games continues," Hunter said.
"As well as providing a platform for some of the country's top athletes, Delhi will also provide a unique opportunity for some of the country's most talented teenagers to shine and to experience a multi-sports Games ahead of London 2012.
"We're looking forward to a fantastic Commonwealth Games," he added.