European cross country champion Fionnuala Britton reckons that a competition inspired by golf’s Ryder Cup – the biennial USA v Europe tournament – could be a massive hit for the sport of athletics.

“I raced in the Great Edinburgh Cross event, which is also a team competition between Britain, Europe and the USA. I thought it was a novel and good idea.

"We compete as an individual so regularly, it is nice to be part of a team. To be honest, I think as athletes, we are all attracted to the sport because it is an individual sport and we don’t have to depend on other people.

"Yet when you are part of a team as an individual, it is nice to have a team behind you and the crowd can also really get behind a team as well.

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Britton: “We compete as an individual so regularly, it is nice to be part of a team” 

"Maybe this format could be set up beyond cross country and also include a road race format and track and field.

"Imagine having a cross country event in January, a road event in April and track event in the summer set up like a Ryder Cup? It could be two-yearly event and properly publicised it could work really well.”

Ireland’s Fionnuala Britton is attempting to win her third consecutive European cross country title in Belgrade, Serbia.

Eleven national broadcasters are showing the Euro Cross, including the BBC. You can stream the races live online, from 9am-2pm GMT, here: http://eurovision.digotel.com/ea/index.html.