One of the sub plots that bubbles to the surface during the Commonwealth Games is the reawakening of the historical battles between old 'foes'.

The splitting of the Home Nations (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) into their individual parts, allows opportunities for more athletes to participate and gain much needed experience of major competition. However, it also throws up a tribalistic edge to the events, as previous teammates on Team GB at such as the Olympics are suddenly fiercest rivals.

After the event they can return to their ongoing friendships, but whilst on the green or in the arena or in the boxing ring, no quarter is asked nor given in their pursuit of sporting victory.

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This is emphasised, any time England and Scotland teams or individuals come together in sporting competition, and there have been many examples already at the Games of 2014.

The group stages of the women's hockey threw up a make or break situation which added an even greater edge to the match. England knew that only a draw was required to progress to the semis, whereas Scotland had to get a win. The early stages of the first half suggested that England would have few issues in their ongoing quest for medals, as they established a two nil cushion. Scotland raised hopes of a comeback by pulling one back before the half time whistle. The second half became a whirlwind of Scottish attacks and fervour in the crowd ('pumped up' by a sole bagpiper's spirited rendition of 'O Flower of Scotland'), as they desperately sought a way back into the competition.

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A multitude of short corners were earned by the Scots to add to the pressure on the England goal. They seemed to go through their full repertoire of corner routines, narrowly missing the equaliser on a number of occasions, but despite a yellow card to England (resulting in a five minute sin binning) right at the end, England gamely held on. Marvellous entertainment for the fans and a great advert for the sport.

The men's boxing threw up an intriguing bout in the Super Heavy category between Joe Joyce of the white rose nation and Ross Henderson from the tartan army. The big men served up a brutal fight of three 3 minute rounds, belying their heavy frames to battle it out toe to toe as the raucous crowd voiced their support.

Despite being on the canvas several times, the Scot gamely fought on before finally finding one punch too much and the referee stepping in to stop the action. Their mutual respect and respect was clearly shown in the post fight interview, when they hugged and praised each other unreservedly, as Henderson tipped Joyce to go and take the gold medal.

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True spirit and sportsmanship in equal measure.

Not that the Scots always come out on the losing side in these close competitions with their rivals from south of the border. No one who witnessed the semi finals of the men's bowls competition will forget the brilliance of the Scot's pair in defeating England on the very last bowl of the very last end. It spurred them on to ultimate victory in the Gold medal match and was a key moment in their success.

No doubt there will be more head to head battles and thrilling stories to recount as the Games reach their conclusion next weekend.  #Athletics