Most competitive Müller Anniversary Games yet, says British star Bradshaw
PUBLISHED: 08:47 22 June 2019 | UPDATED: 08:47 22 June 2019
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British pole vault champion Holly Bradshaw believes that this year's edition of the Müller Anniversary Games could be the most competitive yet.
Bradshaw, 27, who is the current British record holder in the event, makes the claim as British Athletics confirm a hugely competitive women's pole vault field for 2019's Müller Anniversary Games which will see the world's best female pole vaulters go head-to-head in a pre-world championship showdown at the London Stadium on 20-21 July.
Included in the line-up to compete against Bradshaw in London this summer are Olympic, World and European champion Katerina Stefanidi (GRE) and Olympic and World silver medallist Sandi Morris (USA).
Also joining Stefanidi, Morris and Bradshaw are 2015 World champion Yarisley Silva (CUB), 2014 European champion Anzhelika Sidorova (ANA), Olympic bronze medallist Eliza McCartney (NZL), world bronze medallist Robeilys Peinado (VEN), European silver medallist Nikoleta Kiriakopoulou (GRE), Commonwealth champion Alysha Newman (CAN) and 2016 European bronze medallist Angelica Bengtsson (SWE).
European bronze medallist Bradshaw believes that the women's pole vault will be one of the highlights of the weekend at the prestigious two-day Diamond League meeting which takes place ten weeks before the start of the IAAF World Championships in Doha.
She said: "What's great about the women's pole vault competition at the moment is that none of the women are afraid to compete against each other, they always turn out and give it their all across the circuit.
"When I saw the start list for London, I was delighted to see such an array of medals and that literally everyone was going to be there. It might as well be a World or Olympic final with the calibre of talent on show this July."
And she will be calling upon the home crowd to get behind her as she takes on a group of Olympic and World medallists on her home soil, continuing: "I am so lucky to have the chance each year to compete in London, in my home country and in front of a passionate home crowd.
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"Every time I compete in front of a home crowd, it spurs me on massively. The British crowd are amazing and help me on so much. Whenever I compete in Britain, it's almost like a comfort blanket for me to be surrounded by Brits supporting us who have a good understanding of the pole vault competition - and when to clap or cheer - so it definitely gives me a massive edge. Even all of the foreign competitors all say to me how much they enjoy competing in front of the crowd at the London Stadium."
Despite missing huge chunks of training through injury in recent years, British athlete, Bradshaw has proved she's a world-class talent, by consistently challenging the best vaulters in the sport and narrowly missing out on Olympic and outdoor world championship medals.
After a good 2019 indoor season, which saw her clear 4.81m at the Müller Indoor Grand Prix in Birmingham and win a European indoor silver medal in Glasgow, the Loughborough based athlete will be looking to get close to her British record of 4.87m and gain more confidence as she begins her countdown to Doha.
Bradshaw added: "After so many injury setbacks in previous years, I really want to build on the progress I made last summer and during the indoor season this year.
"I've worked on improving my speed and consistency on the runway, over the winter training period, and I know I have the big clearances inside me.
"I know jumping 4.80m+ is of course within my capabilities but this year it's all about patience and making the right decisions to jump high at the appropriate times.
"I know I will be ready for Doha however competing in the London stadium this July will be a massive opportunity and stepping stone in my preparations."
The Müller Anniversary Games has seen history made on numerous occasions in recent years, with some memorable performances from British names such as Sir Mo Farah, Laura Muir and Dina Asher-Smith, while para athletics stars Kare Adenegan and Sophie Hahn both broke world records at the 2018 edition of the event.
Tickets for the Müller Anniversary Games are on sale at www.theticketfactory.com/british-athletics