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Louise Sugden finds positives after finishing fourth at World Para Powerlifting Championships in Georgia

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Newbury’s Louise Sugden believes there were ‘positives’ to take regardless of being unable to secure a medal at the World Para Powerlifting Championships in Georgia earlier this month.

The 37-year-old finished fourth in the women’s -86kg category when she recorded a lift of 130kg during her competition.

Sugden was unable to complete a clean lift of 132kg, meaning third place went to Ukraine’s Nataliia Oliinyk, while Folashade Oluwafemiayo of Nigeria produced a new world’s best of 152.5kg .

Louise Sugden after winning bronze in Tokyo
Louise Sugden after winning bronze in Tokyo

“I was disappointed to finish fourth,” she said. “It was a very competitive class and I think there are a lot of positives to take from my performance.

“I think technically it is one of my best performances and I just have to make sure that I continue to work hard.

“It was an incredibly tough class, I think, because everyone from sixth place went at 128kg which is so competitive.

“When I did the World Championships back in 2019, I finished seventh with 120kg so you can see how the standard has progressed since then.”

The competition came just over three months after Sugden secured bronze in the women’s -86kg category at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

Despite admitting it was a challenge to compete in two events very close to eachother, she was pleased they could take place.

“I am so grateful it was able to go ahead and I am with the Paralympics too because it one of those events where people were unsure if it would take place.

“It would have been awesome if my family were there to see it, but to be in that position having only been in the sport for four-and-a-half years is ridiculous.

“It was challenging because it was so quick after Tokyo and I didn’t really get a chance to rest between a two, so I am going to make use of the rest now until the New Year.”

The former Kennet School pupil will take some time off before getting back into a routine ahead of possibly representing Great Britain at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham next year.

“2022 is very quiet initially and then we have the Commonwealth Games before the European Championships after that.

“It is all very quiet until August, so it will give me a really good training block to build up to the Commonwealth Games if I qualify for them.”

Sugden, who won silver in the 2018 Commonwealth Games, is part of Team England’s ‘Generation 22’ which is a campaign that shines a light on athletes who are breaking through.

“It is fantastic and I love what Team England are doing with the promotional stuff ahead of Birmingham,” she said.

“They are making the most of the home games and I am really honoured to be part of that, so I have to make sure I qualify and give a performance like I have been able to do in the last year.

“It would be incredible to have a full crowd, especially with it being so close to home and I have everything crossed that it can happen because what is a home games if you haven’t got the home support, right?”

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