Richards tar­gets medal in Lon­don

Jamaica Gleaner - - SPORTS - Shayne Fair­man Gleaner Writer

O’DAYNE RICHARDS main­tains he will be work­ing hard to medal at the IAAF World Cham­pi­onships in Lon­don next year.

The 27-year-old Richards has a bronze medal un­der his belt from last year’s Bei­jing World Cham­pi­onships.

“I am al­ways look­ing to not just main­tain, but in­crease. If you are not num­ber one, you still might have work to do to main­tain it,” said Richards, who is all about medal con­tention in Lon­don.

“Def­i­nitely, that is the way I have to think as a pro­fes­sional ath­lete. I al­ways have to think I am able to win a global ti­tle, break records – and world records,” he con­tin­ued.

OP­TI­MISTIC

He said he is op­ti­mistic about next year, due to his abil­ity to “fight through in­juries, surgery and still make it to the Olympic fi­nal” in Rio.

“It kinda gives me hope that I will still man­age to get into the top 10 or even top three in the world next year in Lon­don, so I am re­ally look­ing for­ward to that,” he told The Gleaner, adding that he took lessons away from Rio ahead of the new sea­son.

“Pa­tience is one of the things I took for­ward from 2016, to be mind­ful of the fact that any­thing can hap­pen and not to pres­sure my­self too much.

“I look for­ward to the pos­si­bil­i­ties that are ready and wait­ing for me in 2017, if the Lord wills,” he added.

Richards is also a 2014 Com­mon­wealth Games gold medal­list and Pan Am Games gold medal win­ner last year. He ex­plained that de­spite not medalling in Rio, he will grow from the ex­pe­ri­ence.

“I am grate­ful for what hap­pened this year. I had a few in­juries and be­cause of that I wasn’t able to per­form as well as I would like, but I still man­aged to make it to the Olympic fi­nal and I am grate­ful,” he re­it­er­ated.

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