Jade Lally admitted she felt like an intruder after busting her way onto the podium at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
Lally was sixth four years ago in Delhi but qualified well for last night’s women’s discus final and vowed the competition was wide open for her to secure a medal upgrade.
The 27-year old British No.1 produced her best throw for more than two years to secure her podium spot at Hampden Park.
As expected Australia’s Dani Samuels, the class act in the field, took a comfortable gold ahead of India’s Seema Punia.
But Lally’s fifth round effort of 60.48m was nearly two metres beyond the best of fourth placed New Zealander Siositina Hakeai.
“It feels weird. I almost felt like and intruder going round the track on a lap of honour, I kept expecting someone to come and ask me to leave,” she joked.
“The competition was unbelievable – it was probably one of my best ever. The gold was pretty wrapped up but I’d done my homework and second looked doable but would take a good throw and I’m really happy with bronze.
“I think that’s one of the further throws for a medal in recent Commonwealth Games, so it’s good times.”
But Lally, from Pease Pottage, admitted her preparations for the final were far from ideal. The previous day she complained her lycra shorts were too tight and she also revealed she had been hit by an untimely stomach illness.
“I felt pretty bad in qualifying but my coach said it was nerves,” she added. “I let myself get too hungry and then I was offered a wheelchair in the food hall when I thought I was going to faint.
“It was all very embarrassing and I ended up in the hospital at the athletes’ village. I felt faint, I felt sick and I couldn’t get up.
“The last 24 hours were the most horrific preparation ever, so to go out there and do that – I’m really happy.
“I knew I didn’t feel 100% going into the competition but I rely on adrenaline, the crowd and muscle memory to get me through it.
“I’m over that now and at least I’ve got a medal, so people will forget the wheelchair incident and remember the medal.”
Lally also revealed how some nighttime reading had helped settle her nerves ahead of her Hampden Park appearance.
“I’ve been reading this book to keep me calm, it’s really helped,” she said. “I’ve been trying to stay calm and trust my body.
“I know people have been feeling some pressure but it’s how you deal with pressure that matters. I just tried to stay as relaxed as possible and have self-belief.”
Commonwealth Games England (CGE) leads and manages the participation of the Team England at the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth Youth Games. We work with sports, Sponsors and Sport England to support the development of athletes and their sports, and to achieve success at Games-time.