Australia's 24-year domination of Commonwealth Games over

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1 NEWS | Associated Press

The Commonwealth Games ended today with England winning the overall gold medal race and the country it usurped - Australia - hoping for better things in four years when it will host the event on the Gold Coast.

Emma Pooley of England, Lizzie Armitstead of England and Ashleigh Pasio of South Africa celebrates with their medals after the Women's Cycling Road Race

The first gold today went to cyclist Lizzie Armistead in the road race, and the English added another in badminton later in the day to increase its total to 58, nine clear of second-place Australia.

It marked the first time since 1990 that Australia, which won four events on the last day, hadn't led the gold race at the Commonwealth Games.

New Zealand came sixth overall with 45 medals, 14 of which were gold.

Armitstead, who finished second in the London Olympics road race and at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, led an England one-two finish in the 98-kilometer (61-mile) race on the wet streets of Glasgow.

"Now I can call myself a champ, not a runner-up," Armitstead said. "It was special, something I've always dreamed about."

She finished the seven-lap course in 2 hours, 38 minutes, 43 seconds. Her teammate Emma Pooley, the silver medalist in the time trial on Thursday and who said she plans to retire from cycling, was 25 seconds behind.

Ashleigh Pasio of South Africa took the bronze in a photo finish with Australia's Tiffany Cromwell. Both finished 1:11 behind Armitstead.

Linda Villumsen of New Zealand, the gold medalist in the time trial, was fifth.

In the 12-lap, 168-kilometer (104-mile) men's race held through mostly steady rain, Geraint Thomas of Wales, who won bronze in the time trial here and was 22nd in this year's Tour de France, overcame a punctured tire with just under seven kilometers (4.3 miles) remaining to win gold.

Thomas, who led by about 50 seconds when his tire needed to be replaced by his crew, finished in 4 hours, 13 minutes, 5 seconds. Jack Bauer of New Zealand and Scott Thwaites of England had a sprint finish for second, with Bauer edging ahead on the line for silver. Both Bauer and Thwaites were 1:21 behind Thomas.

"It was such a grim day, I felt terrible at the start," Thomas said. "And when I had that puncture, I thought, 'what do I have to do'? But I had a decent enough gap to stay out in front."

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