OLYMPICS LONDON 2012: I'm no lost cause insists Dobriskey as she reaches 1500m final
LISA Dobriskey wrote her Olympic campaign off as a hopeless cause just six months ago – now she's ready to challenge for a London 2012 medal in tomorrow's 1500m final.
RELIEF: Lisa Dobriskey progresses to the final of the 1500m at the London 2012 Olympics - but there is disappointment for Hannah England
Dobriskey has made a remarkable return to fitness after being diagnosed with potentially fatal blood clots on her lungs earlier this year and is finally showing the sort of form that nearly won her a world title in Berlin three years ago.
She progressed comfortably through her semi-final last night and admitted just qualifying has delivered on her Olympic ambition.
“A few months ago I would have never imagined making an Olympic final," she said.
"I remember the specialist telling me to give up athletics, which only made me more determined to be here in many ways.
“It was at that moment that I really had a turning point and thought ‘no, I’m not giving up on this’.
“I kept dreaming and kept believing so I’m really grateful to be here.
“Six months was the advised time to take time off. My husband Ricky and I were watching a film and he saw a pendant, it’s a patron saint of hopeless causes and he brought it and said it was my ‘hopeless cause’. I’ve worn it every day."
Dobriskey will be joined in the final by British rising star Laura Weightman and she is hopeful the pair can make an impact.
“I think I’ve got something left for the final," Dobriskey added.
"I tried to run as reserved as I could, and I was very lucky to have a slow heat and I don’t thought it took a great deal out of me."
However, there was disappointment for Hannah England.
England knows first-hand that in sport timing is everything. Last year she got it spot on but in Olympic year it couldn't have been more off.
The world silver medallist picked up an Achilles injury in May and blamed the effects of that on her failure to progress to tomorrow's Olympic final.
At her best England knows qualification would have been straightforward.
And while the mind was willing, her body refused to co-operate, as she kicked down the home straight in a bid to snatch a qualifying place it appeared as though she was running through treacle.
“The injury kept me off the track for five weeks which is hard to come back from, and I think that showed," said England.
“It was just too big of a gap in my season to come back from. I hoped I could make the final, maybe I could have done if I had run a little better.
“It’s still sore, it’s been sore every day since it happened for the last ten weeks.
“In the space of a minute it went from hoping to get a medal to thinking ‘can I even get there?’ which is hard to take in the aftermath of it.
“It is great to be here but it’s hard to feel like that immediately after a race like that."
However, England is determined not to write off this season, with the Aviva Grand Prix in Birmingham her next target.
“I can’t take a lot from this experience, I’m just pretty gutted right now," she said.
“I think mentally and physically this has set me up pretty well going forward, but this was the big year so it’s annoying.
“If my Achilles holds up I’ll try out some more Diamond League meetings and some of the big races I can get in, I’ll definitely be there for Birmingham.”
© Sportsbeat 2012