Ogogo tells of painful route to Games

21 July 2012 / 08:55

Three months ago Anthony Ogogo was laid up in a hospital bed convinced his Olympic boxing dream was over but the Great Britain middleweight is convinced he has emerged stronger than ever to strike gold at London 2012.

Ogogo flew home from the World Championships in Baku in April having agonisingly missed out on booking his place on the Games and headed straight into hospital for an urgent operation on his injured shoulder.

He said: "I woke up and was in so much pain that I felt a million miles away from the Olympic Games. But in my heart I never stopped believing. I rarely credit myself, but that's one thing I'm proud of - I never gave up on my dream, I focused and found new levels of determination and hard work and mental strength."

Few athletes' qualification procedures can have been as tortuous as Ogogo's, who was beaten in the last 16 of the World Championships by Brazil's Esquiva Falcao when victory would have earned him his place.

To make matters worse, Ogogo would still have qualified if Falcao had gone on to reach the middleweight final - but the Lowestoft man had endure watching his former foe beaten by Japan's Ryota Murata.

Determined to make the most of his final qualifying chance in Trabzon two months later, Ogogo found himself eight points down going into the final round of his bout with Georgia's Jaba Khositashvili - but amazingly pulled it round and went on to qualify.

Ogogo added: "It was soul-destroying at the worlds. I fully expected to qualify and it was double heartbreak - first when I lost, and then when I saw the guy who beat me lose.

"It was so painful I thought it was never going to happen, but I knuckled down and got the rehab done on my shoulder. I have no doubt the experience is going to pay off for me in London. I have not gone through all this to lose now."