Gil­more’s next goal is go­ing for gold

Sunday Territorian - - SPORT - DAVID RIC­CIO

STEPHANIE Gil­more’s re­lent­less drive sees the sev­en­time world cham­pion want­ing it all, with the Aus­tralian’s sights now firmly set on Olympic glory in Tokyo in 2020.

Gil­more is a star of her sport who doesn’t run from pres­sure – she rides on it.

“You know that say­ing, you can’t win ev­ery­thing? I ac­tu­ally think you can win ev­ery­thing,” Gil­more said in a YouTube pro­file last year.

The 30-year-old’s win­ning men­tal­ity was never more ev­i­dent than dur­ing last week’s sev­enth women’s world ti­tle win, where she equalled the record of fel­low Aussie Layne Beach­ley in the steel-blue wa­ters of Honolua Bay.

When the next Aus­tralian Olympic Squad readi­ness camp is held in Jan­uary on the far North Coast of NSW, Gil­more will set her clock and her sights, on the count­down to be­ing an Olympic cham­pion.

The camp, at Surf­ing Aus­tralia’s $10 mil­lion world-class High Per­for­mance Cen­tre at Casuarina, will in­clude ev­ery Aus­tralian surfer on the 2019 world cham­pi­onship tour.

Only the top two-ranked women and top two-ranked men will be se­lected when the team is an­nounced just prior to the Tokyo games.

If the team were cho­sen to­day, Gil­more (world No.1) and Sally Fitzgib­bons (No.6) would be handed surf­ing’s first Olympic uni­form.

Ul­ti­mately though, re­sults and rank­ings from the 2019 World Cham­pi­onship Tour, will most likely fi­nalise who trav­els to Ja­pan.

But un­de­ni­ably, Gil­more has proved she’s one of Aus­tralian surf­ing’s greatest hopes of se­cur­ing the sport’s firstever Olympic medal.

“Surf­ing for Aus­tralia in the Olympics – what an hon­our,’’ surf leg­end Tom Car­roll said.

“Steph is so in the box seat for a po­ten­tial gold medal, es­pe­cially given how Surf­ing Aus­tralia’s High Per­for­mance team will give so much sup­port in build­ing our team.

“The idea of be­ing an Olympic gold medal­list in surf­ing ... I ad­mit it would’ve been un­real to rep­re­sent my coun­try and do that, to stand up on the podium.’’

Pic­ture: GETTY IMAGES

A ham­string in­jury has ruled Tabitha Sav­ille, right, out of the Ade­laide Strik­ers WBBL match against Bris­bane Heat to­day

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