Peaking at right time
COMMONWEALTH GAMES: If Brooke Stratton had jumped at the last Commonwealth Games like she did on Wednesday, she would have won gold.
So it was understandable the 24-year-old’s first instinct after her final warm-up event was to ensconce herself in cotton wool.
The Victorian long jumper was selected for Glasgow 2014 but withdrew due to a back stress fracture and carried injuries into the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
“I think that makes this a little bit more special,” she said. “I think this is the first major championships I’m actually going into knowing that I’m nearly at my best, or I hopefully will be at my best. It’s really exciting.”
With the aid of a strong wind on her back, Stratton cleared 6.88m – twice – in finishing third at the Queensland International Track Classic on Wednesday. Not bad considering she battled another foot stress fracture at the end of last year.
“I’ve been able to progress by basically 10cm each competition, so hopefully with another two weeks under my belt, who knows?” she said.
If she can go close to topping her personal-best of 7.05m – produced in March 2016 to shatter a 14-year-old Australian and Oceania record – it would almost certainly win her gold.
“It’s so exciting, the thought of it,” Stratton said of competing at a home Games.