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Page last updated at 05:32 GMT, Tuesday, 12 August 2008 06:32 UK

Breeze performance hit by injury

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Video - Breeze battles through pain

Britain's only weightlifting hope in Beijing, Michaela Breeze, bravely finished 15th in the 63kg category after sustaining a back injury.

Breeze converted snatch attempts at 80kg and 85kg which were well below her best, but returned after treatment to post 100kg in the clean and jerk.

Her combined total of 185kg was well short of the 241kg total lifted by gold medallist Pak Hyon Suk of North Korea.

Clearly upset afterwards, Breeze said: "It's an Olympics, pain's irrelevant."


Breeze, who won gold for Wales at the 2006 Commonwealth Games, came into the Olympics with the problem and at one point was slapped by her coach, Andrew Davies, to help her finish the competition.

Breeze eventually buckled in pain from the injury and finished to the crowd's roars before collapsing to the floor sobbing.

The 29-year-old said: "I've trained for so many years for this.

"My coach gave me a slap too. Anything to take the pain away from my back."

The Devon-based lifter added: "Adrenalin is the best pain-killer and the crowd could see I was struggling and really got behind me. They were fantastic.

"It's just the drive that got me through, I suppose."

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Video - Breeze battles against back injury

Although in clear discomfort, Breeze has been assured there will be no long-lasting damage from the injury.

"I've had scans and everything. It was decided that competing would cause no further damage," she said.

"I struggled. I had a back injury coming into the competition.

"If the situation had been different I would probably have pulled out a couple of weeks ago, but there was nobody to replace me.

"I just tried to dig deep and get through the training so I could make it to Beijing.

"I was in some discomfort in training and only managed to snatch up to 75kg in training and only clean-and-jerked 85kg.

"It's not that the weights felt heavy - the problem was the pain I was in. But after so many years of training to get this far I didn't want to pull out."

see also
Pak claims gold for North Korea
12 Aug 08 |  Weightlifting
Devon's Breeze gets Olympic call
14 Jul 08 |  Weightlifting
Breeze in Olympic 'no man's land'
20 Jun 08 |  Weightlifting

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