Adams fights back from the brink in bid for Rio

picture: pengelley photography www.pengelly-photography.co.uk
picture: pengelley photography www.pengelly-photography.co.uk

When — not if — Jonathan Adams throws again at the Paralympic Games his self-satisfaction will be sky high —knowing he fought back from the very brink, to do it his way.

The Great Cornard shotputter has had to draw on all his mental and physical strength, as well as utilising business acumen that would have impressed even Lord Sugar, to overcome a nightmare turn of events out of his control.

An injury stemming from a problem with the splint he used to walk with, as a result of issues arising from his cerebal palsy condition, worsened and eventually led to his governing body, British Athletics, withdrawing his funding.

But Adams, who competed in the 2012 Paralympic Games and started his 2015 season off so promisingly by capturing the British Universities title in his category, was not prepared to be beaten in his quest to secure his place back in the world spotlight.

“It is history as far as I am concerned,” said the ex-Great Cornard Upper School pupil on his battles since the funding withdrawl news came to light only last Wednesday.

“If I am not successful I will not blame it on these problems. But if I am I know what it is down to.

“It has been a philosophical experience and one which has led me to know that I do not need the backing of ‘the best of the best’ to be successful.

“I understand now the sorts of things and support I believe I need to do well.”

After the severe tendinitis in his right knee, which developed as a result of his splint delaminating that led to it being decomissioned, rendered him unable to barely walk, let alone continue to compete, the 23-year-old found himself having to anticipate what was to come.

Forseeing the rug may be pulled from under his feet in terms of finances for training and travelling, he struck a deal on a privately-funded splint — which utilises innovative technology — through a national company that he managed to get to back him after an impassioned pitch.

From there he raised the funds to assemble a highly-trusted support team around him, which included a physiotherapist, Brian Simpson, who was part of Ipswich Town’s legendary manager Sir Bobby Robson’s backroom team, who has been able to prevent surgery on his knee.

With the new throwing aide he is using, Adams now has to learn to throw again from scratch.

But while he will not be able to compete again until May, he is sure where he is heading — Rio’s Paralympics.

“It is the European Championships in Italy next year (June) and I will be using that as a platform for Rio,” he said.

n Any company or individual wishing to help Jonathan in funding his road to Rio can do so by contacting him via: social media (@Jonathanadamsgb on Twitter) or emailing russell.claydon@suffolkfreepress.co.uk or calling the sports team on 01284 757842.