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banner Tuesday, 7 August, 2001, 07:23 GMT 08:23 UK
Edwards to continue long farewell
Jonathan Edwards
Edwards: "It feels great to be a world champion again."
Jonathan Edwards continued his "long goodbye" to top-flight athletics with gold in the World Athletics Championship triple jump.

The 35-year-old added the world title to his Olympic crown and his world record and admitted afterwards that there is more to come.

He said: "I didn't feel in the same way I did at Sydney that I needed to win here to put the seal of quality on my career, but it is important to me.


After Sydney this is another stage in my career - the long goodbye
  Jonathan Edwards
"I am competitive and I enjoy competing, and I wanted to maintain my position as world number one."

Indeed, he said he is looking forward to winning his first Commonwealth Games title next year and defending his European title.

He added: "After Sydney this is another stage in my career - the long goodbye.

"I jumped my furthest for three years and one of the furthest of all time, so it is gratifying."

Edwards, who produced a jump of 17.92 metres in the third round to claim gold, said he is relishing his grandfather figure role.

"I am pleased for the younger guys who jumped well, but when I am out there I am head-to-head with them and I want to win, " he said.

"I am like the grandfather seeing off the young grandchildren."

His win came despite a second-round foul when he narrowly overstepped the mark after a big jump.

Edwards said: " When I got that second-round foul I was worried that was my one chance, because the wind was predominantly in your face.

Jonathan Edwards
Edwards pulled up in his last attempt due to cramp
"I was disappointed it was a foul. There was a very tiny mark there and I have seen those given before as legal, but it is not my style to argue with the officials so I got ready for the next round."

The next round proved to be the winning leap, although the Gateshead athlete did attempt a final jump.

He explained: "A man asked me to make one more jump for the crowd and then they announced it in the stadium, so I had to give it a try.

"But I have naturally tight calves and I knew I would pull up after five strides.

"I felt today that I had a big jump in me and I felt that second-round foul was over 18 metres.


I feel I have a big jump in me when it matters
  Jonathan Edwards
"If that had registered then I could have had one round to run at it without worrying where my foot was, and 18 metres was possible, I was in that territory."

Edwards is hopeful of more success in the future.

He added: "I shall finish this season and then have a good rest, which I didn't have after Sydney. Then I shall start training in January and see how things go.

"I am 35 so I may get injured easily, although I have been injury-free for three years and I am surprised how good my shape is. I feel I have a big jump in me when it matters."

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