Katarina Johnson-Thompson believes heptathlon world title is there for taking

Katarina Johnson-Thompson is able to return to her finest and believes the world heptathlon title is up for grabs.

The 2019 champion is eyeing the rostrum on the World Championships after final yr’s winner Nafi Thiam pulled out.

Belgium’s Thiam, the double Olympic champion, is sidelined with an Achilles concern as she targets the treble at subsequent yr’s Games in Paris.

The USA’s Anna Hall, third in Eugene final yr, is favorite for the crown in Hungary however Johnson-Thompson feels the competitors is vast open.

“Before Thiam dropped out, I felt like it was very much like a head-to-head between Thiam and Anna Hall and now I don’t know what it’s going to take to win a medal,” she stated, forward of the beginning of the heptathlon in Budapest on Saturday.

“I don’t know what it’s going to take to win. So that’s why I really feel prefer it’s open. I may title 5 individuals who may end between first, second and third.

“Sometimes the heptathlon could be a two-person race after which everybody else is preventing for the bronze, I really feel like this yr is kind of open and I don’t know the place it’s going to go.

“You by no means know. I’ve all the time been apprehensive that 2019 was my peak, as a result of then Covid occurred and I had my Achilles rupture and the momentum I used to be constructing in the direction of my peak received brief modified and lower off.

“I really feel like anyone who’s received a significant championship has the flexibility to say ‘I’ve finished it earlier than due to this fact, it may be finished once more’. I really feel like that, though I can’t keep in mind it.

“Whenever I look again at movies, or see photos of Doha, it simply takes me again to that place in time and the way of thinking I used to be in.

“So it’s all the time a optimistic factor to look again. What has been finished earlier than may be finished once more. That’s the kind of way of thinking I get myself into once I see these photos.

“I similar to to show myself proper. I really feel like if I let different folks’s opinions in, I wouldn’t be sitting right here saying that I’m in fine condition and excited in regards to the end result, as a result of I’d have as an alternative believed that I’d as effectively hand over or my physique isn’t proper for it.

“My aim is a medal and I believe I can rating what it takes to get on the podium however you by no means know whether or not the occasion goes to go off or if it’s going to be fairly subdued.

This is perhaps my final heptathlon earlier than Paris – I do not know if I’m going to do one other one. So it is like a full on costume rehearsal

Katarina Johnson-Thompson

“I’m trying to predict the future but I can’t. I feel like that’s why I’m just chilled because you’re just never going to know.”

Johnson-Thompson beat Thiam to win world gold in Doha 4 years in the past earlier than her Achilles rupture in late 2020.

She recovered to make the Tokyo Olympics solely to endure a calf damage within the 200m and withdraw. She completed eighth ultimately yr’s World Championships – having break up with coach Petros Kyprianou weeks earlier than after solely 5 months in Florida.

A profitable defence of her Commonwealth Games title in Birmingham put her again on the rostrum and she or he is now content material in Hungary.

“This one feels different in the way that I feel like I’m the calmest I’ve ever been going into it,” stated the 30-year-old, now based mostly within the UK underneath Aston Moore.

“In Doha it was exciting and I had a big battle but with this one I feel completely calm and full of experience.

“I’ve done it so many times now and it never gets any easier but you can approach it in a different manner. I feel like this one, I’m just going to put all my experience into it and see where it gets me.

“It’s always a stepping stone to next year, because ultimately the main goal of my career is to get an Olympic medal.

“This is maybe my last heptathlon before Paris – I don’t know if I’m going to do another one. So it’s like a full on dress rehearsal.”

Leave a Comment