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'It's nice to be finally recognised' - javelin star Sayers to receive 2008 Olympic medal in July

PUBLISHED: 12:15 11 June 2019 | UPDATED: 12:15 11 June 2019

Suffolk's Goldie Sayers will finally get her bronze medal from the 2008 Olympics at the Anniversary Games in London next month. Picture: PA SPORT

Suffolk's Goldie Sayers will finally get her bronze medal from the 2008 Olympics at the Anniversary Games in London next month. Picture: PA SPORT

Archant

More than ten years have passed since she was denied her moment in the spotlight - and Goldie Sayers admits she can't wait to finally receive her Olympic bronze medal, writes Andy Baber.

Goldie Sayers celebrates setting a new national record with her first throw in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Picture: PA SPORTGoldie Sayers celebrates setting a new national record with her first throw in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. Picture: PA SPORT

The retired javelin star, from Newmarket, finished fourth at the Beijing 2008 Games despite throwing a British record of 65.75m as German Christina Obergfoll claimed the final podium spot.

But Russian Mariya Abakumova subsequently had her silver medal stripped after a re-analysis of a sample from the Games resulted in a positive test for anabolic steroid turinabol.

Her appeal against the doping ban was dismissed last year and Sayers will now finally receive her long-awaited bronze medal in July at the Anniversary Games - a moment she plans to savour.

"I found out that it was going to be presented at the London Stadium a couple of months ago and you can choose now how you like it presented," said SportsAid alumni Sayers.

Goldie Sayers retired in 2017, and was recently named in our list of Suffolk's 100 most inspirational women. Picture: PA SPORTGoldie Sayers retired in 2017, and was recently named in our list of Suffolk's 100 most inspirational women. Picture: PA SPORT

MORE: Life after sport - Why Sayers is saying yes to everything

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"It's nice for it to be in a stadium where you can invite friends and family to share the moment with you, but I found out about the actual medal back in December.

"It was a performance that would win a medal in any other Olympic Games and I found out initially that the Russian athlete had failed a retrospective doping test in 2016.

"But then she appealed so it took about two years for that appeal to go through. It then has to be officially ratified and you have to be notified by the IOC, so it was quite a long process.

"It is definitely frustrating and sadly at the time there is nothing you can do about it, it's just nice to finally be recognised for a performance that was pretty special on the day.

MORE: Sayers named in Suffolk's 100 most inspiring women

"I couldn't have done any more and it's sad to miss out on ten years of your career not knowing that you were an Olympic medallist but I'm going to enjoy the moment with friends and family.

"In a way it's a positive as they wouldn't have all been there at the time, so it will be nice to share it with everybody - I can invite my first coaches and PE teachers and everybody to the stadium."

- The Mayor of London is working with SportsAid to provide financial support and personal development opportunities to talented young athletes from across the capital. Visit https://www.london.gov.uk/what-we-do/sports/sport-unites/sportsaid to find out more.

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