Jade Jones insists she is ready and raring to start stepping up her World Championship preparations as she returns to action at this week’s World Taekwondo Federation President’s Cup in Athens.
Double Olympic gold medallist Jones had taken some time to pursue other interests after a golden 2016 which saw her defend her Olympic title in Rio and win the World Grand Prix final last December.
That includes competing on celebrity ski jumping show The Jump but she is now firmly back in taekwondo mode.
Just one major title is missing from her glittering collection – World Championship gold – with a chance to amend that stat at the global gathering in Muju, South Korea in June.
Before that comes a number of preparation events, starting with the four-day competition in the Greek capital, starting today.
Jones will step onto the mat in the -57kg category later today, with the 24-year-determined to enjoy herself first and foremost.
“I’m not putting any pressure on myself because I have only been back in full training for about a month,” she said.
“It’s mainly all about getting match practice for the World Championships.
“But I don’t go anywhere to lose. I have had a good enough break and this time I feel ready to come back myself.
“I don’t have anything to prove after defending my Olympic title and so it’s all about enjoying the competition.”
Jones is joined in competing today by three up-and-coming male prospects in Max Cater, Josh Calland and Bradly Sinden.
Day two then features world champion and Rio 2016 bronze medallist Bianca Walkden and European champion Lauren Williams, while Peter Longobardi-Radford goes on Saturday and Christian McNeish, Jade Slavin and Rachelle Booth compete on the final day on Sunday.
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