May 18 2013 Latest news:
Friday, June 15, 2012
Robbie Grabarz’s coach Fuzz Ahmed believes it will take something spectacular to deny the high jumper gold at the Olympic Games.
The Newham & Essex Beagles man has set the world alight with his recent form – which has seen him record a personal best of 2.33 metres outdoors – the highest jump by anyone in the world this year, in Rome at the end of May.
The 24-year-old continued his recent rise to prominence with a lifetime best jump of 2.36m indoors in a Diamond League meeting in New York on Saturday.
But Ahmed feels that with the condition Grabarz is in at the moment, it will see him difficult to beat.
“Somebody’s going to have to be unbelievable to spoil the party,” said Ahmed.
“If somebody can come along and jump higher than Robbie, then good for him. But right now Robbie is very focused and is one of the best physical specimens I’ve ever seen.
“You put all those ingredients together and I expect big things from him.”
After a poor 2011 season, his National Lottery funding was withdrawn and he had been getting by with help from former Olympians Steve Backley and Roger Black with their company BackleyBack.
And despite that, Grabarz’s coach still believes he would have been in contention of a place at his home Games.
“If I hadn’t found him backing and if he didn’t have a credit card, I would have funded him because that’s how much I believed in him,” added Ahmed, who is also UK Athletics’ national event coach for high jump.
“I recognised he had matured into a person that wanted to be a world class high jumper, rather than somebody who was just a very good high jumper.
“He’s got a fantastic mind and an extraordinary body, but now a focus that he didn’t have before.”
Ahmed also believes there is a lot more to come from the Olympic hope before the high jump competition commences on August 5.
“I expect significantly more from this outdoor season. I think indoors was a bit of a shock to him over how easy it was,” he said.
“Now he thinks ‘I can prove to myself I am possibly one of the greatest high jumpers that has ever lived’.”