All roads to Tokyo 2021 … via Jersey

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The former F44 discus world record holder – one of Team GB’s most decorated Paralympic athletes – appeared in St Clement on Sunday for the Island club’s third elite-level competition of the week, having been encouraged to travel across by Loughborough-based training colleagues who made the journey days earlier.

Greaves – Paralympic champion at Athens 2004 and a medallist at every Games since – was one of three international athletes on show, including Britain’s top two discus throwers, Jade Lally and Kirtsy Law. All three are coached by Jerseyman Zane Duquemin.

‘I started working with Zane just before lockdown,’ said European record holder Greaves, who finished the event with a best of 56.47m.

‘The girls [Lally, Law and Jersey’s Shadine Duquemin] reported back and I heard good things so I decided to come and throw and it’s nice to get some normality. To be able to just jump on a flight to come and compete here is really good and I can’t thank the officials enough for giving us all the opportunity.

‘We’re just doing these competitions to see what sticks with new technical aspects. Everyone always wants to throw further but I got a season’s best, so it’s better than a kick in the teeth.’

Greaves, who provided a negative pre-travel Covid test before flying to Jersey, said: ‘Tokyo [2020 Paralympics] was the plan for this year but I was heavily injured with my hip last year, so it is actually a blessing in disguise for me.

‘Now, me and Zane can work for another year together – the stuff we’ve been working on this year has been really good – and hopefully next year we can go to Tokyo and try and medal. That’s the aim.’

Lally, who missed last Tuesday’s competition following a lost pre-travel Covid swab, said: ‘I like to give myself the opportunity … that’s the biggest thing. When an opportunity is denied I’m not too happy about it.

‘I didn’t enjoy being banished but thankfully the results came in and luckily the guys here [JSAC] were so helpful and put on an extra competition [on Thursday]. I couldn’t have asked for anything more and Kirsty got a season’s best, which shows how important that was that they went through the stress to put it on at late notice.

‘I’m thankful that I’ve had two opportunities. I didn’t capitalise, but that’s the way it is sometimes.’

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