Javelin ace Goldie Sayers is confident she is finally back to her best form following two years of gruelling uncertainty over her sporting future.
The 32-year-old has once again started dreaming of stepping out on the biggest stage, for the Olympic Games in Rio De Janiero next year, after seeing her hopes of clinching gold at London 2012 dashed by an elbow injury weeks before at the London Grand Prix.
But having successfully come through an operation which involved taking a ligament out of her right wrist and inserting it into her left arm, and going back to basics with her throwing technique, Sayers, who came fourth at the Beijing Games in 2008, believes she is now stronger than before.
“I’m confident I am back to where I was before the injury and in fact my arm is quicker and stronger than it was,” she said. “Getting injured when I did was particularly tough but when you are out you appreciate what you’ve lost.
“There was no point dwelling on it, I had to remain focused on what I had to do and sometimes that can be a real eye opener.
“My upper body is in great shape and the key now is to stay healthy.
“Strangely I’m getting better the older I get, javelin is a discipline that just takes time.
“Rio is definitely my major focus but I’m also targeting London for the World Championships after that, I just want to be competitive again.
“Once I get back to competing strongly again I will be able to assess my chances in the future.”
Sayers’ future appeared even more uncertain during her injury nightmare as she discovered her lottery funding had been cut during last season.
However, the UK record holder has also been handed a major boost with her funding after agreeing to an intriguing deal with sporting philanthropist Barrie Wells, who will help back Sayers in return for her coaching world number one heptathlete Katrina Johnson-Thompson as well as getting involved with Wells’ Box 4 Kids charity initiative.
“I hate asking for anything, especially money, but I know he has helped a lot of athletes in the past and it is a great opportunity for me to give something back,” she added.
“The arrangement is pretty simple in essence.
“He has a great relationship with Kat and so it is more than just someone giving me sponsorship.
“Ultimately it is about fine tuning her javelin throwing, my job is really to give her a few tricks to help technically.
“The funding doesn’t completely cover what I lost from the Lottery funding, but practically. It is a nice relationship to have.
“It is great to have Barrie involved, he is passionate about sport and he really understands the needs of athletes and the problems they face.”
n The Box 4 Kids initiative is aimed at giving disabled and terminally ill children and their carers an executive box for a day at sporting venues such as football grounds like Anfield, the Ethihad, the Emirates, the Hawthorns, the Britannia Stadium and Wembley as well as Wimbledon, the Royal Albert Hall and arenas in Leeds, Liverpool and Sheffield.
For further information contact Katie Hewison on 01524 590600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.