PARALYMPICS: Lydia was eighth, but remains on cloud nine, while Stilton shooter Matt vows to bounce back

Peterborough & Nene Valley shot put ace Lydia Church finished a slightly disappointing eigth in her Paralympic final in Tokyo, but she still reached cloud nine as she enjoyed every minute of her trip to the Far East.

By Barry Warne
Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 3:29 pm
Lydia Church.
Lydia Church.

Church has been managing a shoulder problem which limited her range of movement. She is undergoing an operation to rectify the problem later this month.

The competition was held on an evening of torrential rain in Tokyo, which caused a slippery shot putting circle.

Church was one of a number of throwers to take a tumble, falling on her already damaged shoulder.

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Matt Skelhon.

She hit back with a best throw of 11.41m on an evening when all the athletes found the going tough.

After landing back at Heathrow on Saturday evening (September 4) Church said “It’s been an amazing experience, and one I will never forget.

“The facilities were really good, and the Paralympic village was everything and more than I had imagined.

“My performance wasn’t what I wanted, however it was still amazing considering the weather conditions and how I absolutely stacked it.

“I’m now bruised and in pain, but this has been a great experience for me. I’m looking forward to working with my coach James Edwards on my technique, once I’m fully fit from my shoulder surgery.”

Stilton shooter Matt Skelhon, a multiple Paralympic medallist,had a disappointing time in Tokyo finishing 13th and 16th in his two events, but he’s vowed to bounce back strongly.

Skelhon said: “It was a really tough week. In the first match I couldn’t really work out what went wrong. My training dipped at the last minute and I carried that form into the event which was hard to take. In the second event I just couldn’t handle the pressure. I really lost it.

“It’s 90% mental, but I am sure now we will have a proper competition schedule I will be able build my confidence back up before the World Championships next year.”