TOO much speed was behind the high jump horrors that threatened to end Ashley Bryant’s Commonwealth Games medal hopes last night.
Brunel University's Bryant lies fourth with his medal hopes still intact, but only after suffering some heart in mouth moments in the fourth of the 10 events at Hampden Park.
Bryant began the evening in the bronze medal position, but was soon in peril after two failures at his opening height of 1.78m, usually a formality for a 2.00m plus jumper at his best.
A no height would have ended his Commonwealth Games dreams, but to huge relief he cleared the bar by a mile at his third attempt.
He believes being too fast on his approach was the cause of his woes.
He said: “I think it was something as simple as the surface here is quite quick and I didn’t control the approach, so I attacked it the same way I would normally and it meant I was carrying too much speed.
“I didn’t make that correction at the opening height, but lucky or not I got over and started to jump better.”
He revealed he had tweaked an ankle in clearing the height at the third attempt and had to battle his way through a number of further failures to eventually reach 1.99m, just a centimetre short of his season’s best.
However, the knock-on effect was a lacklustre 49.07 in the 400m which closed the first day.
He said: “I cleared the bar on the third attempt on too many occasions and had so many jumps it left me knackered for that 400m where I also think I went a bit too quick at the start.”
Bryant though refused to be too downbeat, knowing some of his trump card events await later today.
“I haven’t got it quite right on a lot of occasions, so I’ve had to grind out a result and although I’ve got there in the end in most of the events the way I’ve got there has stopped me from pushing on to the standard I would have liked,” he added.
“It’s not ideal, but at least I have not dropped too many points along the way and I’m still in contention overnight and that’s important.
“It is all about where you are after 10 events. Some people may have their strong events on day one while you may have yours on day two and if you get too hung up on where you are overnight it can affect your performance, so I will try and put it to the back of my head.”
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