Delighted Amy now going for gold after surprise Commonwealth Games call
- Credit: GUY PLATTEN
An unexpected email sparked wild jubilation for Amy Platten as she prepares for the judo competition at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
The 21-year-old former St Albans Girls' School was struck down by an injury in the early part of the year which hampered her plans.
But now she has the call from Team England, there is only one thing on her mind ahead of the Birmingham event.
"You’ve got to [go for medals]," she said. "You’ve got to aim for gold and that’s exactly what I’m doing. I’ll settle for nothing less.
"I didn’t think I was going to be selected. The injury kept me out of a big chunk of the qualification period so I’d put it out of my mind.
"Being selected has just made me that bit more grateful.
"It’s always been a dream and the fact it is in Birmingham makes it more special."
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She has competed at European and world championships before but her only taste of a multi-sport environment was as a youngster at the Youth Olympics.
And she says the event being what it is brings even more pride in her selection.
She said: "I’ve been to big events but this is extra-special.
"I was around people who were preparing for the Olympics in Tokyo because I’m in the full-time centre. I felt the energy and it is really good.
"I’m expecting a wild crowd and probably be one of the best memories of my life.
"I’ve got high hopes for the Games. It makes it all the more memorable to be with other sports and be part of a family with other athletes all representing your country.
"When you’re in a judo competition, you go and compete but this is going to be an experience alongside that."
Keeping the news quiet was tough but she had the small matter of finishing her degree at Nottingham University to keep her mind off the Games.
And with the results out in a little more than a week's time, she is ready to fully commit towards her main goal, qualification for the 2024 Olympics in Paris.
"May 31 was my final exam," she said. "It’s been hard juggling the two. There have been a lot of sacrifice but I just feel free now, I feel like I can focus 100 per cent on my sport.
"It was good to university alongside the judo as it has given me more discipline.
"But we’re now two years out from the [Paris 2024] Games and with the Commonwealth Games this summer, it's time to throw myself into it."