*** PRESS RELEASE ***
Paralympian Stephen Miller MBE Targets Tokyo 2020 after Missing Out on World Championships
For the first time in 24 years, Paralympian Stephen Miller MBE from Cramlington has missed out on selection for a Great Britain & NI team. The team to compete at the World Para Athletics Championships being held in Dubai later this year was announced on Wednesday 18th September, and for the first time in over two decades Stephen Miller’s name was not on the list.
Competition was fierce for the 40 spots available in the reduced-size team being taken to Dubai. It is the first major championship in his 24-year career in which he will not be competing. Miller has competed at the previous 7 World Championships, which were held every 4 years until 2011 when they moved to being held biannually. His first appearance was all the way back in 1998 in Birmingham. Miller’s medal haul at World Championships is 3 Gold, 1 Silver and 2 Bronze medals.
Despite this disappointing setback, Miller’s sights are still focussed on competing in his 7th Paralympics in Tokyo next year.
In 2019, the 39-year-old had his best start to a season for many years, throwing 30.69m at the Dubai Grand Prix in February to win Silver. However, a shoulder injury hampered him for most of the summer season and the Gateshead Harrier struggled to build on his promising start. In August there were signs of recovery with two performances over 31 metres. Unfortunately, that was not enough to gain selection and he will now take a break to recover from a long and frustrating season before starting his preparations for next year’s challenge and ensure he’s in the best shape possible for Tokyo 2020.
Stephen is fully committed to the sport and is looking for sponsorship to help him achieve his dream of competing at Tokyo 2020, he needs more support than ever before – if you would like to help, please visit the website below.
The campaign website can be found here:
Stephen said “Team selection is a complex and stressful process for everyone involved. I’ve been through it many times and it doesn’t get any easier. It’s a strange feeling to miss out on a championship for the first time in my career but I’ve been lucky enough to have been selected many times in the past. I’d like to congratulate all the athletes that have been selected, there’s no better feeling than to represent your country.”
“Selection was particularly tough this year given the small size of the team and the fact that my event is always very competitive. I wish the team all the best and although I’m gutted that I won’t be there, I’ll be supporting as much as I can. The plan was to compete at the worlds ahead of the Tokyo Paralympics next year but nothing in life is certain and we will now sit down to work out where we can improve over the winter to be in the team next year and get my body fully healthy so I can give it my best shot for Tokyo 2020.”
“I still believe I can win medals at the highest level and I will use this as motivation to prove that going forward. I’d like to thank wholeheartedly all the people that have supported me this year – my coach, my family, my friends, my support team and my sponsors – your support means so much to me.”
“I’ve come up a little short of my goal this year, which hurts me a lot, but I will learn from it and move on to the next challenge, embracing it fully.”
For more information, contact Stephen on 07812083615 or firstname.lastname@example.org