Promising Duckworth can build on Berlin - Thompson

Yahoo Sport UK
Daley Thompson was speaking at the launch of his pop-up gym on London’s Southbank
Daley Thompson was speaking at the launch of his pop-up gym on London’s Southbank

Daley Thompson knows better than most what it takes to be a gold medallist and the double Olympic champion is backing Liverpool decathlete Tim Duckworth for big things.

Duckworth came agonisingly close to a European medal in Berlin last week, leading after day one of the competition before being bettered by Germany’s Arthur Abele in the javelin and 1500m.

That saw the Liverpool Harrier slip off the podium but the 22-year-old is only just beginning in his sporting career as he bids for the top.

That’s the view of Thompson at least, Olympic decathlon champion at both Moscow 1980 and Los Angeles 1984 Games, hopeful this is just the beginning of his talent.

“It’s always nice to see a Brit doing well but it’s also nice to see somebody who’s improving and have a newcomer on the scene do really well,” he said.

“While Tim didn’t win a medal, he engaged with some of the best in the world for the first time and he equipped himself really well.

“He was leading for a long part of the event and will learn a lot from this experience.”

Thompson was speaking on London’s Southbank, encouraging people to keep moving and chase their dreams whatever their age by launching a pop-up gym.

The gym, which was open for one day only, was part of Bridgestone’s Olympic partnership campaign, Chase Your Dreams, No Matter What.

The Olympian was on hand throughout the day to encourage and inspire those taking part, citing his own career whose successful career in which self-belief and focused attitude was key to victory.

It’s those mentalities which Thompson hopes can be instilled throughout British athletics, backing the likes of Duckworth to be the ones to deliver.

“I think Great Britain did fantastically in the European Championships in Berlin,” he added.

“I think that a lot of the kids stepped up to the plate and hopefully they will be able to step up again in the next couple of years for when we do the World Championships and then thinking further ahead to the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020.

“I think the next generation are doing really well and it will be interesting to see how they go in Tokyo but it’s a little early yet to say who exactly could be an Olympic champion and who won’t be.

“But I think those who did well in Berlin have given themselves a great start to get in there.”

Daley Thompson is an ambassador for Bridgestone’s Worldwide Olympic partnership campaign, Chase Your Dream, No Matter What. For more info and to watch a short film of his Snowdon climb. visit www.nomatterwhat.uk.com

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