THOUSANDS of runners pounded the streets of central Southampton  in the ABP Half Marathon and 10k.

Incredibly, the half marathons were won by a couple - Matthew Revier claiming the men's title while Laura Benton won the women's race.

They were joined by thousands of other participants, ranging from a firefighter in full gear to Saints legends Matt Le Tissier and Francis Benali, as well as club chairman Ralph Krueger.

Matthew Revier was the first man to cross the finishing line while his girlfriend Laura Brenton joined him just a few moments later being the fastest woman on the circuit.

The pair, who have only been going out for a couple of months, but have known each other for two years, hugged and kissed each other after coming in just over an hour after they started.

Breathing quickly after his dramatic race, Matthew, 26, who lives in Shirley, said: “I loved I, the crowds were amazing. I was relaxed on the flat, the support from the crowds was incredible.”

In what could have been a disastrous start to the race, someone stepped on Laura’s shoes, forcing her to stop to get it back on.

Despite this setback the 29-year old crossed the line ahead of the pack to cheers from the crowds who were lining up to see the runners.

Laura, from Bassett, said: “It was great that both of us won - usually one of us has a good race and the other a bad one, so it was good that we both did well together.

Matthew, who works for Aviva Insurance in Chandlers Ford, added: “She got tripped from behind so I said you’ve got to stop. I stopped with her and made sure she got the shoe back on.”

She added: “Then I just had to work really hard through the next two miles and I caught the header at Ocean Village.”

Laura had plenty of cheers to get her round the course. “I heard at least ten ‘go on miss’ and lots of ‘oh my god there’s my teacher!’”

Although the pair train together at the same club, they stick to easy runs when out together so they can match each other’s pace. But they’re still competitive with each other.

Laura, a PE teacher at the Gregg School in Townhill Park, said: “When I heard people shouting out that he was in the lead I thought there’s no way I can come second now!

“And I’m really pleased I’ve done it now – I’ve never done a half marathon before. Although I would have liked an easier course, the route from Woodmill onwards is my run home from work so I know that section well. ”

Damien McCann was running for Cancer Research UK after his wife Sarah died last year of bowel cancer.

The 39-year old who from Bannister Park was managed to raise more than £1,100 for the cause.

After finishing he said: "I'm feeling really good, really happy. It was easier than I thought, I was not looking forward to it."

Since her death, he has been running and lost 4.5 stone.

"I wanted to get fit and be healthy," he said.

In the battle of the Saints legends, Franny Benali came out on top, perhaps unsurprisingly given his exploits last year in running between every Premier League ground.

He said: "It's been a great day with great support"

However Le Tissier wasn't far behind.

A team from the Daily Echo also took part, with reporter Maxwell Kusi-Obodum saying: "It was tough especially the last two miles because I hadn't done enough training."

Colleague Rob Purse said "It felt good and I'm happy with it I think I did enough training.

"You always wonder if you'd done enough but it was good and I feel great."