Olympic long jump gold medallist Greg Rutherford (coach: Dan Pfaff) and Olympic high jump bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz (Fuzz Ahmed) have confirmed that they will compete at the Glasgow British International Match on Saturday 25 January.
Rutherford, who leapt to gold London 2012 on ‘Super Saturday’ is ready to get back to winning ways starting with his first indoor meet of the season at the Emirates Arena.
“2014 is a big year for sport in Scotland with the Commonwealth Games in the horizon and the Glasgow British Athletics Match will be my first meet in 2014, and one I’m really looking forward to. It’s great test to see how the body has recovered but the focus is definitely on a good season both indoors and outdoors.
“It’s been five years since I last competed at the event and it will be my first time competing at the Emirates Arena, so almost a trip into unchartered territory. The event has a great history of hosting some of the world’s best athletes including the likes of Mike Powell, Michael Johnson, Mo Farah, Jess Ennis amongst others, and I’m sure 2014 will be no different,” added the Olympic champion, who will make his first indoor appearance in four years.
Despite an injury-interrupted 2013, Rutherford is determined to get back on top of the podium in the summer, with the Commonwealth Games and European Championships firmly in his sights.
“My goal this year was to win gold in Moscow, so it was unfortunate to get the injury when I did. However, injuries are part and parcel of the sport, so I’m just looking to hit the ground running in 2014 and show that like with 2012, I’m still the one to beat. There are more gold medals to aim for this summer in Glasgow and Zurich, and I’m more determined than ever to add more silverware to my Olympic title.”
Like Rutherford, Grabarz is looking forward to competing in to Glasgow after finishing behind Russia’s Aleksey Dimitrik at the inaugural Glasgow British Athletics International Match at the Emirates Arena in 2013.
“It will be a really good opportunity to get my season underway at the Glasgow British Athletics International Match. I know from last year how much the Scottish crowd get behind the athletes, and with a big year ahead for the city, I’m sure the atmosphere will be even better.
“I had an unforgettable year in 2012 winning the Diamond League, European outdoor gold and of course the Olympic bronze medal and although 2013 didn’t pan out as I quite hoped, it has made me more determined going into next year.”
The 26 year old, who finished eighth in Moscow in a competition that saw three athletes go beyond 2.38m believes that while the event is getting stronger, he is more than capable of replicating the form that saw him match the British outdoor record of 2.37m last year.
“I don’t think there’s an event more competitive than the high jump. With the likes of (Mutaz Essa) Barshim, (Bohdan) Bondarenko, (Ivan) Ukhov, (Erik) Kynard, (Derek) Drouin all going above 2.35m this year, we all know it’s going to take a jump in the high-30s or even into the 40s to win a major competition.
“I’ve got some big targets to aim for with the World Indoors, Commonwealth Games and defending my European title, so I’m determined to reproduce my best and put myself back in medal contention.”
Rutherford and Grabarz will join T44 100m Paralympic and world champion Jonnie Peacock (Steve Fudge), T44 100m world record holder Richard Browne, European Indoor 60m silver medallist James Dasaolu (Fudge), 2003 world 100m champion Kim Collins, world 4x400m relay bronze medallist Eilidh Child (Malcolm Arnold) and European U23 1500m bronze medallist Laura Muir (Andy Young) at the Glasgow British Athletics International Match.