THE BEST OF 2009: Jessica Ennis
"I would be really pleased to win any medal, gold, silver or bronze."
GOLDEN GIRL: Jessica Ennis celebrates her heptathlon gold outside the iconic Olympiastadion in Berlin (Getty Images)
As I sat next to Jessica Ennis in the Portugal sun at the Aviva warm-weather training camp, this is what she tried to convince me.
I didn't believe her at the time and the way she demolished the field in Berlin I think proves the point. Ennis was in the form of her life and she knew that she quite probably wouldn't have a better chance for a major championship gold.
So impressive had her comeback from injury been in 2009 that Kelly Sotherton's absence from Berlin was to be a mere footnote of the World Athletics Championships.
She was perfectly primed, destined to avenge her Olympic heartache of 12 months previous. But she wasn't letting it get to her.
UKA head coach Charles van Commenee strutted round the Monte Gordo track in his dark glasses and despite the Algarve sun it was a dark and serious atmosphere that pervaded the camp throughout their warm-weather preparation.
But Ennis - gee'd and jeered on by coach Tony Minichiello - existed outside that sober mood.
The pair of them joked and laughed their way through their morning training sessions, Ennis working her way through a number of different disciplines, never in a rush but never taking it lightly.
Minichiello may have been quick to laugh but there was also intensity to the sessions. A high jump session for example involved very few actual attempts but a lot of rehearsals and earnest discussion. This was a girl on a mission.
I spoke to her after a morning session which had seen her smash her knee on a hurdle and she admitted that her high jump session had not gone well at all.
She spoke candidly about the nightmare of 2008 and missing Beijing and I wanted to believe her that she would have been happy with any medal.
But it didn't wash, she was the favourite, she was happy to be the favourite and much to my delight she produced the goods.
Because, let's be honest, she is a really, really nice girl. You would think that the poster girl of the British athletics team might be a bit full of herself but nothing of the sort.
The allotted ten minute interview time came and went and unlike some other athletes she wasn't looking at her watch or looking around.
Only Jenny Meadows and Lisa Dobriskey rivalled her in the willingness to chat/nice-o-meter stakes.
Far from me to claim any credit for the GB medal haul but there's definitely a correlation there?!
Maybe there's a job I could do, Charles?
Read more 2009 memories from the Sportsbeat reporters who witnessed them: