Jamie Cooke (GBR) certainly knows how to win, after claiming the Junior World Championships 12 months ago in Argentina. Ever since this famous victory Cooke’s form has dropped. With his form went his high world ranking which resulted in him missing out on a place at the 2012 London Olympic Games. To add insult to injury, just over a month ago Cooke broke his hand in a training accident.
Despite this turbulent year, being the professional that Cooke is, he re grouped himself and qualified 1st in his group to make it through tomorrow final. This could just be the event for Cooke to re-launch his faltering career. However to do this, he will need to fencer a lot better than he has done in 2012 and can’t just reply on his super quick swim to get him gold.
“Fencing has been hard this year, so this time I’m looking to fencing well and to try enjoy it, as when I enjoy it I fence well” stated Cooke.
Cooke’s biggest rival for gold will be the Russian sensation Ilya Shugarov (RUS). The Russians were already tipping Shugarov to do big things before his World Cup #4 win on the senior circuit this year, but now the rest of the World knows of his sublime talents.
Shugarov’s strength is his fencing, so don’t be surprised to see him at the top of the leader board after the 1st event tomorrow morning. If this is the case, he will be very difficult to chase down as he has no weaknesses.
Starting to dream of gold, Shugarov said: “As to every athlete the victory at the World Championships would be a great honour for me and for my country.”
Today Esposito won the first ever World Championship medal for an Australian, so why can’t Ireland win its 1st? This is what Arthur Lanigan O’Keeffe will be thinking as he goes to sleep tonight. Lanigan O’Keeffe has shown major improvements over the past 12 months on the senior circuit to make himself a serious contender for the title tomorrow. The Irishman is the kind of Pentathlete that is consistent over all 5 disciplines, so people most likely won’t notice him until all of a sudden he dashes over the finishing line for gold.
Lanigan O’Keeffe was one of the junior athletes lucky enough to compete in London. This is how he thinks it will benefit him: “Competing in London will obviously give me huge confidence in my ability but it’s the same as every competition and I must make sure not to get too cocky these athletes are very strong too.”
The Korean team has been creating a sort of legacy in the Junior Modern Pentathlon in the relay competition, by winning the event the past 2 years so everyone knows of their talents, especially after they qualified all their 4 athletes to the final.
Their biggest threat for gold will be their Youth Olympic champion Dae Beom Kim who looked in great form in the relay, but struggled in the qualification, only just qualifying in 11th position. However with the sublime talents this young man has, he will not repeat this poor form twice.