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Burnley’s Sophie Hitchon going for gold

Burnley’s Sophie Hitchon will look to add to her medal haul at the IAAF World Athletics Championships, which start on Friday 4th August in London. The 26-year-old, who won bronze in the hammer last summer at the Rio Olympics, goes in qualifying on Saturday at the London Stadium.

The competitors are split into two groups, with Group A going at 10-35 a.m., and Group B at 12-05 p.m., with the final on Monday night at 7 p.m. The 2010 World junior champion was fourth at the Worlds two years ago in Beijing with a British record – which she surpassed in Rio, but is only focused on the job in hand, getting to the final.

Speaking on Tuesday, she said: “We are just going into this championships like any other. Focus is on qualification. It can be the hardest part. Then we go from there. I’m not thinking about any expectation, just trying to execute what we have been doing.”

It is that kind of clear-mindedness which has seen her consistently produce her best on the biggest stages at vital times. She threw a British record five years ago in the then-Olympic Stadium in Stratford, of 71.98m, to qualify for the final at her first Games, going on to finish 12th. After breaking that record at the European Team Championships in Gateshead the following year, going out to 72.97, Hitchon again set a new mark in Beijing two years ago, going out to 73.86m for fourth. And a huge throw of 74.54m in Brazil 12 months ago earned her bronze – the first British women’s hammer thrower to win an Olympic medal.
Original story: Burnley Express