British Under-23 champion eyes Commonwealth Games

AIMING HIGH: Emily Pursehouse
AIMING HIGH: Emily Pursehouse

After clinching the British Women’s Under-23 Weightlifting title earlier this month, Emily Pursehouse has set long-term sights on the Commonwealth Games.

That victory in the under 75kg category continued the 21-year-old’s rapid rise within a sport she only took up full time in September 2016.

And while next year’s Commonwealth Games on Australia’s Gold Coast will come around too quickly, Pursehouse believes she could be primed and ready to represent her country by the time the event rolls round again in 2022.

“With five years of preparation to go, my coach feels I could be ready for the next Commonwealth Games in 2022,” said the former Diss High School pupil.

“Hopefully that can happen — it would be fantastic.

“I do not see any reason why not, especially if I can do well in other international competitions before then.”

An appearance in 2022 will almost certainly be made in front of a home crowd, with Birmingham the only city bidding to host the sporting festival.

However, Pursehouse is well aware that is all a long way in the future, with January’s English Senior Championships at the forefront of her thinking.

And after winning in the British Under-23 Championships — as well as the British University Women’s Weightlifting title earlier this year — the Loughborough University graduate is keen to add to her collection.

“Going in to British Champs I was probably one of two people that could win it,” she added. “So I knew I was set for the podium, but to win it was a nice surprise.

“There will be a lot of competitors at the English Champs with more experience than me, but hopefully I can keep up my recent results.”

When Pursehouse takes to the platform early next year, it will be a far cry from the sporting career she had previously embarked on.

Pursehouse was a promising sprinter when a torn hamstring suffered at the Nationals cut short her time on the track.

“When your hamstring goes it is really hard to get it back to what it was,” she said.

“I kept making a return and then it would go again.

“It probably still is not right, but thankfully I do not use it much any more when I am competing.

“I have surprised myself how well I have done switching from one sport to the 
other.”