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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Waiting the hardest part for Mel Breen

Waiting the hardest part for Mel Breen

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1 Waiting the hardest part for Mel Breen on Tue Jun 12, 2012 11:55 am


Read more:

Waiting the hardest part for Mel

By David Polkinghorne
Canberra Times
June 11, 2012

Canberra sprinter Mel Breen will tomorrow find out if she will be selected
for the London Olympics. Photo: Melissa Adams

Tough. That sums up Canberra sprinter Melissa Breen's past month as she waits for Athletics Australia to decide whether her Olympic dream will come true.

She has her good days but she also has her bad ones.

It's been a mental battle far tougher than any training session could possibly be.

Breen missed an Olympic Games A-qualifier (11.29 seconds) by just two one-thousandths of a second and her fate lies in the hands of selectors, who will meet tomorrow to pick the team for London.

Breen could get a call as early as tomorrow morning with the outcome, however the final squad is expected to be announced on Wednesday.

As a developing athlete, the 21-year-old can gain a discretionary selection for the women's 100 metres after posting multiple B-qualifiers, including her heartbreaking 11.292s.

Breen has had regular meetings with sports psychologist Sarah Jack to discuss her plight as she counted down the sleeps until today - the Australian deadline for athletics qualification.

But what's another day when you've been waiting your whole life to fulfil a dream of competing on one of the world's biggest stages?

Her discussions with Jack have reinforced that it's OK to have bad days.

We all do, it's only human.

''Some days I'm good and really happy and other days I just get sick of being really positive all the time,'' Breen said.

''It's hard to be positive all the time and I see my sports psych Sarah Jack at the ACT Academy of Sport and it's fine. It's impossible to be positive all the time, we're human.''

''You can't just have a brave face on all the time and I've had moments this month where it's hurt more than I could imagine. But in the end I'm surviving, I'm going OK and no matter what happens I've trained my butt off this month and I'm in the best shape.''

The next few days will no doubt count among her worst, with nothing to do but wait.

Hoping the phone rings and AA chairman of selectors Dion Russell's name flashes up, desperately wanting him to say: ''Pack your bags Mel, you're going to London!''

She has no idea when that call might come.

''I've waited this long, a few more days isn't going to kill me,'' she said.

Complicating matters even further is the women's 4x100m relay.

Breen will be part of that team, which currently is ranked 15th in the world - just one spot inside the available spaces.

There are no planned runs between now and the qualification deadline of July 2, so they can only hope countries like Italy don't overtake them.

It's another waiting game where she could see herself selected this week, only to get unpicked in three weeks' time.

In the meantime, all Breen can do is train.

She'll head to Europe on June 20 to compete regardless of whether she's picked.

It's the only certainty in an otherwise frustrating time.

''It's been awfully challenging the last month but I've trained really awesome. I've probably had the best month of training I've had because it's something that I can completely control,'' Breen said.

''I come to the track and I control everything I do at training and that's got me through this last month. It's been difficult but the support I'm receiving, even from people I don't know that write to me on Facebook and on Twitter … I'm very appreciative of that.''

Good luck Mel. I hope the rumours are true........ Wink

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