No pain – no Games for determined Ogogo
THINGS could not get much worse for Anthony Ogogo right now.
Having crashed out of the World Amateur Boxing Championships in Azerbaijan last month, just one bout short of an automatic spot at next year’s Olympics in London, a dejected Ogogo then came home to have surgery on his troublesome right shoulder.
The operation was a success but a bodyblow was served when it was revealed Ogogo would be sidelined until next April, the date of the European qualifiers in Turkey and his last chance to make it to London.
When he woke up from his operation, a groggy Ogogo found that personal belongings, including his phone, had been taken.
Having experienced a turbulent few weeks the 22-year-old could be forgiven for writing off his Olympic dream but Ogogo is not giving up.
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“There is normally a six month recovery period after an operation like this,” said Ogogo, who suffered bone and cartliage damage to his shoulder, made worse during his exploits in Baku.
“But that is no good for me, the Olympics are the be-all and end-all and I need to be back within four months, for eight weeks solid training, so I will have to cut corners, although that does not mean easing up on anything.
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“My surgeon knows my situation and has admitted I am going to face a real tight and tough schedule to get fit but I have no other option.
“The way I feel about the Olympics and about representing Great Britian in my home country leaves me with a risk that I am willing to take.”
Ogogo lost to Brazil’s Esquiva Falcao Florentino in the last 16 in Azerbaijan but admitted to being hampered by his shoulder problem as he approached the latter stages of the tournament. Victory would have guaranteed him a spot in London and bought him some time in the quest to get his shoulder right but instead he had to watch as the South American went on to claim the bronze medal.
“I hated it, it was horrible,” said Ogogo of his experience in eastern Europe.
“My arm locked as a result of my shoulder problem in my second fight and I knew I was not at 100% against the Brazilian. If I had been, there is no way he would have beaten me. Instead I sat there and watched the Brazilian be happy with a bronze medal and not turn up against the Japanese lad, Ryota Murata, in the semi-final.
“Murate lost to the Ukrainian guy (Evhen Khytrov) in the final and I knew I could beat all those guys.
“I was upset and sulked for a while after the event but now I just have to pick my bottom lip up and start again.”