Commonwealth Games: Laura Kenny helps England claim team pursuit bronze

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Laura Kenny helped England claim bronze at the Commonwealth Games  (AFP via Getty Images)
Laura Kenny helped England claim bronze at the Commonwealth Games (AFP via Getty Images)

Laura Kenny is not accustomed to being upstaged in British Cycling circles but had to make do with bronze in her return to an English jersey as her England teammates took silver.

Kenny had pondered walking away from competitive cycling altogether after a tough 2021 in which she suffered a miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy.

But at the London track where she became a household name back in 2012, she sealed the last spot on the podium in the women’s team 4000metre pursuit, although has two more shots at gold in the scratch and points races.

There was a silver of sorts for husband Jason, who retired in the wake of the Tokyo Olympics, as he coached the British trio of Ryan Owens, Hamish Turnbull and Joe Truman to second place in the men’s team sprint but, in truth, they never got close to their Australian rivals come the final.

His wife, who rode with Josie Knight, Maddie Leech and Sophie Lewis, has grown accustomed to celebrating gold at the major championships but she said she felt a huge expectation to bring back a medal of any sort such have been her past successes.

“I don’t think I have ever felt so much pressure to win a bronze medal in my life with a younger team,” she said. “I was a whole bag of nerves to help them win and get a taste of medals I’ve had in the past. To be totally honest, I’ve been the weak link in the last two rounds.”

Commonwealth Games 2022: Best Pictures

England’s Alex Yee celebrates after winning the Men’ Individual (Sprint Distance) Final at Sutton Park (PA)
England’s Alex Yee celebrates after winning the Men’ Individual (Sprint Distance) Final at Sutton Park (PA)
Lesotho’s Qhobosheane Mohlerepe (right)  and Cyprus’ Odysseas Atmatzidis during the Men’s Over 60kg-63.5kg (Light Welter) - Round of 32 at The NEC on day one of 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. (PA)
Lesotho’s Qhobosheane Mohlerepe (right) and Cyprus’ Odysseas Atmatzidis during the Men’s Over 60kg-63.5kg (Light Welter) - Round of 32 at The NEC on day one of 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. (PA)
England’s Adam Peaty trains at the Sandwell Aquatics Centre in Birmingham, on the day before the swimming competition begins at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (AFP via Getty Images)
England’s Adam Peaty trains at the Sandwell Aquatics Centre in Birmingham, on the day before the swimming competition begins at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (AFP via Getty Images)
Grace Crompton of Team England breaks past Anusha Attanayaka of Team Sri Lanka to score a try during the Women’s Rugby Sevens Pool A match between Team England and Team Sri Lanka on day one of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games (Getty Images)
Grace Crompton of Team England breaks past Anusha Attanayaka of Team Sri Lanka to score a try during the Women’s Rugby Sevens Pool A match between Team England and Team Sri Lanka on day one of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games (Getty Images)
South Africa’s Muhammad Khaalid Mia rotation Parallel Bars of the Men’s Team Final and Individual Qualification, Subdivision One at Arena Birmingham on day one of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (PA)
South Africa’s Muhammad Khaalid Mia rotation Parallel Bars of the Men’s Team Final and Individual Qualification, Subdivision One at Arena Birmingham on day one of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham (PA)
England’s Tom Bowen in action with Samoa’s Steve Onosai (REUTERS)
England’s Tom Bowen in action with Samoa’s Steve Onosai (REUTERS)
Fireworks explode above the the Alexander Stadium during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games (AFP via Getty Images)
Fireworks explode above the the Alexander Stadium during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games (AFP via Getty Images)
Athletes of Team England take part during the Opening Ceremony of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at Alexander Stadium (Getty Images)
Athletes of Team England take part during the Opening Ceremony of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at Alexander Stadium (Getty Images)
Athletes gather round The Bull during the opening ceremony of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at the Alexander Stadium, Birmingham (PA)
Athletes gather round The Bull during the opening ceremony of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games at the Alexander Stadium, Birmingham (PA)
Team England in action during qualifying (REUTERS)
Team England in action during qualifying (REUTERS)
Singapore’s Tianwei Feng in action during her team group stage match against England’s Tin-Tin Ho (REUTERS)
Singapore’s Tianwei Feng in action during her team group stage match against England’s Tin-Tin Ho (REUTERS)

A week ago, Oliver Wood had been in bed in the foetal position with food poisoning but climbed out of his sick bed to help the English quartet win silver in the men’s 4000m pursuit.

But Wood and teammates Dan Bigham, Charlie Tanfield and Ethan Vernon, who’d had just one training run together as a four following Wood’s illness, were no match for the New Zealand quartet who dominated the ride-off for gold.

Following the silver, Wood said: “If you wound back to Friday I was in the foetal position with the world’s worst stomach pain, I would have said I wouldn’t be here but I came through the week alright.”

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