Inside Athletics

Watt a start

Mitchell Watt has recorded his longest ever season opening jump with an 8.21m performance on the Gold Coast.

Competing in preparation the New York Diamond League meeting, Watt was pleased with the performance.

“I probably had my best jump in the first round, but it was a tiny foul. Once I got at least 8.20 out that’s all I wanted," he said.

“It’s my best ever season opener so I was hoping to jump something around that. Things in training have been going really well, even better than last year. But a few things are a touch behind because I haven’t had as much volume as I previously would have, having had the domestic season out. The jumping element has been going well though.

“I leave for New York on Wednesday. Today was half competition, half training for me. There was Gary [Bourne – his coach], my parents and a few news crews. To jump that in those conditions, by myself, is pleasing.”

Watt missed the domestic season to nurse injuries which hampered his performance at last year's world championships, where he entered the competition as favourite but had to settle for the silver medal. He's determined not to have similar circumstances occur again this year at the London Olympics.

“Last year I was happy to win the Diamond League but felt like I was trying to hold onto my form in Daegu having jumped massive in Shanghai and Stockholm.

"This year it’s about building week-to-week to ensure I have my biggest jumps in London.”