Evans eyes Olympic selection

30 April 2012 / 12:32

Weightlifter Gareth Evans hopes to have double cause for celebration next month.

The Olympic hopeful heads into May knowing he has just two more chances to stake his claim for a place in Team GB at this summer's Games, one at the Welsh Championships in his hometown of Holyhead and the other at the British Senior Championships on May 26.

The latter forms the final opportunity for lifters to achieve either the 'A' or 'B' Olympic qualifying standard, with only three male and two female lifters then selected to compete at London 2012.

For Evans, along with the rest of the athletes who have been training so hard to achieve the goal of being part of the team at a home Olympics, it is crunch time.

The 26-year-old hit the 'B' standard at the European Weightlifting Championships in Antalya, Turkey earlier this month, but, despite being only 12kg adrift of 'A' standard, he was far from happy.

"I was extremely disappointed with my performance," said Evans. "I hit the 'A' standard nine days before in the gym so I was severely disappointed. I picked up a bit of a back niggle as well which I'm trying to sort out with physio at the moment.

"Everything running up to the competition was really good but as soon as I stepped out on to the platform it seemed to just fall apart unfortunately, it was one of those experiences to learn from."

He added: "There's a lot of competition, a lot of people competing for three men's spaces and, at the end of the day, the best three lifters are going to go. Hopefully I'll do enough to go, if I don't then I'll shake the hands of the people who do. If it is me I'll be really, really happy."

Evans also has another reason to go back home to north Wales in May - his beloved Wrexham. The Dragons are in play-off semi-final action against Luton as they bid to reach a possible Wembley final and seal a return to the Football League for the first time since 2008.

"I'm a massive fan," he said. "I'm going to go home for the second leg (of the semi-final) but I'm not going to make it to the away leg unfortunately. I'm a bit upset because the final is going to be around the British Championships, which is my last qualifying opportunity."