London 2012: Sayers will go through pain barrier for medal chance
JAVELIN star Goldie Sayers is determined to battle through the pain barrier and not let an arm injury prevent her from taking part in a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to throw at her home Olympics.
At the end of last week it was revealed the Newmarket-born athlete had torn a ligament in her right arm when competing in last month’s Aviva London Grand Prix at Crystal Palace.
But despite the minor setback, which she is believed to have picked up during her fourth throw at the event, Sayers is remaining upbeat about the situation having received treatment for the injury while on a recent training camp with Team GB in Portugal.
It is not the first time in the 30 year old’s career that injury has threatened to ruin her chances of participating in a major event, with a hip and knee problems forcing her out of both the 2010 Commonwealth Games and European Championships.
“I have a tear of an elbow ligament in my right arm but I will definitely compete in London,” said Sayers.
“It is likely to be painful, however I won’t let that get in the way of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
“Experience tells me that adrenaline and the support of the home crowd will be the best possible painkiller.”
Although sustaining the injury at Crystal Palace, the event was far from one of doom and gloom, with the Belgrave Harrier breaking her own UK record of 65.75m when producing a first round throw of 66.17m.
Not only did the throw see her smash her previous best, set at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, it also saw her beat some key rivals including current Olympic champion Barbora Spotakova.
“Crystal Palace was the ideal preparation for the Olympics,” said Sayers. “It was unbelievable breaking the record as it was something that was high on my list of targets plus a lot of my friends were in the stadium.
“Hopefully I can produce something similar at the Olympics.”
Unlike some of her major rivals, one thing Sayers is not worried about is the possibility of having to perform in wet conditions during Tuesday’s qualifying round.
“In some respect I would like it to rain as I have done a lot of my training in wet weather and I don’t mind the adverse weather conditions,” she said. “There are others in the field who don’t seem to perform as well in the rain but when there is an Olympic medal on the line I imagine people will respond differently as it means so much.”
In most normal years Sayers’ throw of 65.75m in Beijing would have been good enough to make the podium.
With this year’s longest throw among the women’s javelin ranks failing to break the 70m mark, Sayers’ chances of bagging a medal have increased further.
Should Sayers finish on the podium at the Games she would be the first woman from Team GB to medal in the javelin since Fatima Whitbread took silver in the 1988 games in Seoul.
“There are four in the competition who can throw over 70 metres, but them sort of distances are not produced very often,” added Sayers. “It could end up that the javelin will be won with a throw of 66m or a world record, you just don’t know.
“I think I am probably capable of medalling at the Games.
“It is all just about your performance on the day and what other people do.
“I am aiming for a similar performance to the one at the London Grand Prix.
“Hopefully I can throw even further. Even if I don’t medal at the Games, as long I know that I have done my best I will not be disappointed.”
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