Team GB’s poster girl and the fastest woman in Britain who carried athletes’ kit on Super Saturday at London 2012 and is aiming to win gold at Tokyo Olympics

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It has been some journey for Dina Asher-Smith.

The 25-year-old has gone from carrying athletes’ kits on Super Saturday at the Olympic Games in London nine years ago to being Team GB’s poster girl.

Asher-Smith is aiming to win gold at the Tokyo Olympics having claimed bronze at the 2016 Games

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Asher-Smith is aiming to win gold at the Tokyo Olympics having claimed bronze at the 2016 Games

Since watching Jessica Ennis, Greg Rutherford and Mo Farah claim gold medals on an historic day in British athletics, it is fair to say it inspired Asher-Smith to great heights.

Recalling the 2012 Olympics experience, she said: “I was fortunate enough to be a box carrier and I did it on Super Saturday.

“So I saw Jessica Ennis-Hill, Greg Rutherford and Mo Farah do absolutely amazing.

“It really did inspire me to see how much people want British athletes to do well.”

The impact that left on Asher-Smith, Team GB’s poster girl for the Tokyo Olympics, is clear.

She won her first global senior medal in the 100m at the Athletics World Championship in Doha in 2019, before securing gold in the 200m days later.

The 2019 Athletics World Championships in Doha was a huge success for Asher-Smith

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The 2019 Athletics World Championships in Doha was a huge success for Asher-Smith

The London-born sprinter has experience competing at the Olympics, too, as she finished in fifth place in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Notably, Asher-Smith, Asha Philip, Desiree Henry and Daryll Neita won bronze in the 4x100m relay with a British record time of 41.77 seconds at the same Olympic Games.

Other successes came at the European Athletics Championship in Berlin in 2018 as she won three gold medals in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay.

Asher-Smith, Britain’s fastest woman, is now one of our great hopes of bringing home gold as she prepares to race in 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay in Tokyo.

Asher-Smith was part of the relay team that won bronze at the 2016 Olympic Games

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Asher-Smith was part of the relay team that won bronze at the 2016 Olympic Games

She holds British records in the 100m and 200m with times of 10.83 and 21.88 seconds, respectively.

It’s this sort of speed that make her a marked woman at the start of races coupled with her increasing profile off the track that has seen grace the covers of Vogue and Elle.

And Asher-Smith does not seemed fazed by the predictable psychological warfare likely to take place in the forthcoming weeks.

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She said: “I personally don’t partake in mind games and I definitely have had people try it on me.

“But I mind my own business too much. Sometimes people decide to warm up in my lane or the lane I have taken. I don’t get annoyed, I just think it’s really sad.

“When I go into a race, I’ll devote the last moments of the time with my coach and support team to do what I can to better my performance. That’s rarely dependant on anybody else.

Asher-Smith insists she does not get bothered by mind games

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Asher-Smith insists she does not get bothered by mind games

“In this moment, you’re trying to think about winning. So you do what is best for you to win the race. If they think the best chance they have to win the race is by distracting me, that says a lot.

“So I don’t play mind games. I like the bend of a 200m, I like chasing people down – that’s a fun game I like to play.”

Asher-Smith is not only a star on the pitch, she is one off it, too.

She worked hard for nine A* GCSE grades before studying for a history degree at King’s College London and leaving with a BA (Hons).

And more potential medals at the Tokyo Olympics will only add to what has already been a hugely impressive career.


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