For­mer Olympic hep­tathlon cham­pion Jessica En­nis-Hill re­tires

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

For­mer Olympic hep­tathlon cham­pion Jessica En­nis-Hill an­nounced her re­tire­ment from track and field yes­ter­day, end­ing the ca­reer of one of Bri­tain’s most suc­cess­ful sportswomen. The 30-year-old En­nis-Hill won the hep­tathlon gold medal at the 2012 Lon­don Olympics, won a sec­ond world cham­pi­onship gold a year af­ter giv­ing birth to her first child, and won sil­ver at the this year’s Rio de Janeiro Olympics. “I’ve al­ways said I want to leave my sport on a high and have no re­grets,” she said in a post on Twit­ter and In­sta­gram , “and I can truly say that.” The poster girl for the Lon­don Games, En­nis-Hill is among the most pop­u­lar sports­peo­ple in Bri­tain and widely re­garded as a role model to up­com­ing ath­letes. “Her record as an ath­lete is phe­nom­e­nal and that’s with­out con­sid­er­ing the chal­lenges of re­turn­ing from preg­nancy to win world gold and Olympic sil­ver,” said Neil Black, per­for­mance direc­tor at Bri­tish Ath­let­ics. “I’d like to thank her not only for her con­tri­bu­tion to the GB team over the years, but ad­di­tion­ally for be­ing a great per­son to work with, know and sup­port.” En­nis-Hill took time out of the sport to give birth to son Reg­gie — forc­ing her to miss the 2014 Com­mon­wealth Games — and hinted about end­ing her 11year pro­fes­sional ca­reer im­me­di­ately af­ter win­ning the sil­ver medal in Rio, be­hind Nafis­satou Thiam of Bel­gium. “From my first world ti­tle in Ber­lin 2009 to Rio 2016, I’m so for­tu­nate to have had such an amaz­ing ca­reer within the sport I love and this has been one of the tough­est de­ci­sions I’ve had to make,” she said. “But I know that re­tir­ing now is right.” An ex­cel­lent sprint hur­dler and long jumper, En­nis-Hill broke through in 2006 by win­ning bronze in the hep­tathlon at her only Com­mon­wealth Games. Other ca­reer high­lights in­cluded win­ning hep­tathlon gold at the 2010 Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships and win­ning the world in­door pen­tathlon ti­tle the same year. She dom­i­nated the hep­tathlon be­tween 2009-12, a pe­riod that cul­mi­nated in En­nis-Hill han­dling home pres­sure to win Olympic gold.

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