Black History Month: Reflecting on Denise Lewis twenty years on

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Twenty years ago, history was made at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Here, we remember Denise Lewis’ historical Gold medal in the women’s heptathlon.

Credit: British Athletics

Birchfield Harriers athlete Denise Lewis OBE, 48, was not only the first British gold medallist, but the first British heptathlete to win medals in two consecutive Olympics and the first European athlete to win the heptathlon at an Olympic Games.

She was one of the favourites going into the games – Britain’s “Golden Girl”. But, it wasn’t an easy win for Denise.

Prior to the games, she had been facing many injuries and was uncertain of what the outcome would be.

After day one of the competition she was in third place and had to fight hard through out day two.

It came down to the 800m.

“When I had crossed the line, my first emotion was relief. I had given everything I could possibly give, and if it wasn’t going to be enough then it was my destiny”.

Denise Lewis, BBC Sport

She was crowned the Olympic Champion and a moment in sporting history was made.

Since the Olympic Games, Denise has gone on to be a BBC Sport presenter and appointed President of Commonwealth Games England.

#blackhistorymonth #birminghamsportingheros

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