Claxton has point to prove

Sarah Claxton is determined to prove her doubters wrong by reaching next year's World Championships after being written off for being too injury-prone.

Claxton has point to prove

View photo

Lolo Jones (R) from the U.S. clears the last hurdle ahead of Britain's Sarah Claxton during the women's 60m hurdles event at the Aviva International Match athletics meeting at the Kelvin Hall in Glasgow, Scotland January 31, 2009 (Reuters)

The 32-year-old made the 100m hurdles final at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 but a long-term Achilles tendon problem dashed her dreams of competing at London 2012.

She finished third behind Olympic heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis and also Tiffany Porter at the Olympic Trials - running on a sore heel after the heats.

And her season's-best time of 13.16 seconds was well below her personal best of 12.81 which would have easily met the London 2012 A standard.

However, with hopes of an injury-free 2013 ahead, Claxton is champing at the bit to prove to her critics that she still deserves her place on the international stage.

She showed her domestic rivals just what she is about by topping the women's 100m hurdles McCain Challenge Series standings this year, the country's premier domestic athletics series.

And she said: "Some people have written me off. I don't really shout about how bad my injury was but I wasn't running well and not performing to the level I'm capable of.

"They just assumed I wasn't running to my best and didn't really believe how bad the injury was. I hope I can prove some people wrong with my performances next season.

"I have got to come back and prove to myself that they are wrong. Being injured in the Olympic season made it even more frustrating because I knew in myself that I should have been running quicker than I did.

"But now I hope to make the European Indoor Championships in Sweden next March and get to the World Championships next season - and I think with an injury-free season I can get back to my best.

"I think it is really important to have these targets as it gives me something to aim for. Hopefully I will be able to make the finals there."

Claxton initially refused to watch the London Olympics on television because of the pain she thought it would cause.

But she soon changed her mind and admits seeing Britain collect six track medals, including four golds, has motivated her to attack winter training with renewed gusto - especially now she is no longer afraid of the Achilles problem recurring.

"To be honest I wasn't going to watch the Olympics but then I thought I had to, and I was happy I did because it was a fantastic Games," she added.

"It has really inspired and motivated me to get back out on the track and to perform and compete to my best. It has given me a lot of drive.

"Hopefully the injury won't come back again next season but if it does I know how to control it now.

"My coaches and physiotherapists are very knowledgeable and have shown me the right rehab exercises.

"Perhaps the injury happened because I was overtraining or doing too much. I was pushing myself too hard, but now I know better."

View comments (1)