Sophie Hitchon never stopped believing she could win an Olympic medal, after claiming bronze with her final throw of the hammer final.
Sophie became the first British athlete in history to win an Olympic hammer throw meda,l after smashing a dramatic new personal best with her last attempt for bronze in Rio.
British record holder Hitchon, after a no throw, went into medal contention with an effort of 73.29m from her second attempt before being knocked out the top three in the fourth round.
However, Hitchon was not to be denied her moment, and secured an historic bronze medal with a big British record of 74.54m, with her last throw sparking huge celebrations.
It was a final to remember not just for Hitchon’s medal but for Anita Wlodarczyk’s world record of 82.29m for gold, set in the third round and bettering her previous mark by over a metre.
She said: “I can believe it a little bit because training has been going so well but to do it in competition is a little bit different. I knew it was there if I pulled together and it is a bit special.
“I wanted to keep my mind quiet [going into the last round] and execute my technique, I have done it again, again and again in training but to do it in competition is a little bit different.
“I didn’t think I had done enough in the second round, I knew the girls could throw further than that and I would never rest on a throw, I always want to push for more.
“Anita is amazing; I have been throwing against her for a few years now. Coming fourth at the World Championships [in 2015] and European Championships [in July], she is always wining but hopefully in few years we can all be clutching at her heels a little bit.
“I don’t think about the history of it going into it. I still think my fourth and fifth rounds were a little bit shaky, I knew I wasn’t quite pulling it together and I knew if I could pull it together it was going to go far, I just kept believing that.”