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Proctor's Olympic gamble pays off

JUMPING FOR JOY: Shara Proctor

ANGUILLA-BORN Shara Proctor was a three time winner at the Olympic trials at the Alexander Stadium today.

The long jumper won the gold medal with a leap of 6.95m, secured her place at the London 2012 Games and won $5,000 for breaking the national record .The Birchfield Harrier, who lives in the sunshine state of Florida, said of the upcoming London extravaganza: “My hopes are to be on the podium and to achieve a personal best.

“I’m just on top of the world right now. I got the British record, I’m going to the Olympics; how good can it get?!

“It was not good conditions but I said to myself London might be like this so I have to prepare and do my best no matter what so that’s what I did today.

“I have what it takes, I have to go back and work on some technical problems and I’ll be fine.”

Proctor, 23, staved off the challenges of GB golden girl, Jessica who finished in 6th after a jump of 6.27m, and Lorraine Ugen and Jazmin Sawyers who finished second and third respectively. Jade Johnson finished 9th with a mark of 6.21m.

Dubbed a ‘plastic Brit’ by those that oppose her representing Team GB, Proctor competed at the 2006 Commonwealth Games and the 2007 World Championships for Anguilla, but without reaching the final round.
In November 2010, she transferred her allegiance to Great Britain.

As a British Overseas Territory, Anguilla does not have a National Olympic Committee (NOC) of its own; the British Olympic Association is recognised as the appropriate NOC for such athletes and thus Anguillan athletes who hold a British passport are eligible to represent Great Britain at the Olympic Games.

In 2012, Proctor won her first senior medal for Great Britain, a bronze medal in the long jump in the IAAF World Indoor Athletics Championships, after a British national indoor record leap of 6.89 metres.

Among Anguilla’s most high profile sports people is Omari Banks, who played for the West Indies cricket team, while Cardigan Connor played first-class cricket for English county side Hampshire.

The island's capital is The Valley. The total land area of the territory is 35 sq miles with a population of approximately 14,000.

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