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Angel’s hope in Sapphire

Anakie greyhound trainer Matt Lanigan has come along way since he made the move from Swan Hill to chase his dreams of becoming a full-time greyhound trainer.

16 months has passed and in the that time the 27-year-old has found himself caring for 58 greyhounds and competing week in week out against some of the best greyhounds and trainers. He has also picked up an elusive Group 1 victory in the Sale Cup on Boxing Day last year.

Thursday night will see Matt tackle another Group 1 feature, this time the Sapphire Crown at Sandown Park with Origami Angel.

Origami Angel is owned and bred by one of Matt’s mentors in Angela Langton (pictured) and to make matters that little bit more special, Origami Angel is out of one of Angela’s favourites Heidi Go Seek who sadly passed away last year.

Origami Angel’s kennel name is Olive, somewhat short for her mother’s kennel name Olivia.

“It’s amazing to see how special this dog is to Angela and it’s great that we have been able to get to Group 1 level with Olive,” trainer Matt Lanigan said.

Origami Angel finished second to fastest qualifier and star greyhound Black Opium in the heats last week at Sandown Park.

WATCH: Black Opium (B3) and Origami Angel (B5) in their Sapphire Crown heat.

“I was really happy with her run. It was her first 500 metre race since returning from a back-muscle injury and I think she will be much better for the run.”

“She is going to need some luck from box six but if she begins well, she will be hitting the line strong.”

Origami Angel is one of the ranked outsiders in Thursday nights Group 1 Sapphire Crown final (race six at 7.43pm) at Sandown Park.

Although the odds are stacked against Matt for another Group 1 victory, he is thankful for it all.

“I’ve been very lucky since I made the move and a lot of that is thanks to Jeff (Britton) and Angela (Langton). It’s something I won’t take for granted and I still pinch myself to think I’m competing against some of the best trainers and dogs in the country.”

You can now watch every Victorian greyhound race live and free via The Watchdog mobile form guide app, or follow ‘Watchdog Racing’ on Twitter or Facebook.

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