Sally Pearson is managing home-town pressure and an Achilles injury in her Games lead-upSally Pearson rates herself at 90 per cent fitness as she battles to overcome an Achilles complaint to win her third straight Commonwealth Games gold medal.
But the world champion is confident of racing the 100m hurdles at Carrara Stadium on April 12 and won’t hold back despite managing the lingering injury.
Pearson, 31, says the problem has kept her off the track since Wednesday, but her experience in navigating previous injuries has meant she isn’t panicking.
“If this had been my first major thing that’s happened in the last few years then I’d probably be struggling a lot more,” the Gold Coaster told reporters on Saturday.
“Because I’ve been through hands and Achilles and hamstring (injuries) before, and deciding to coach myself, all the big decisions I’ve had to make… it’s definitely helped me to cope.
“There’s more spotlight here. It being my home town, and , it does make more pressure, but I’m dealing with it well and staying relaxed.”
Experienced n head coach Craig Hilliard said the team co-captain’s composure this week had further steeled the young side.
“That’s one of her great qualities; it’s very inspirational, her and (fellow co-captain) Kurt (Fearnley) are two of the greatest leaders we’ve got in our sport,” he said.
“To see Sally, how she approaches these things, how you deal with them and how you cope with them … to still be upbeat and talk and deal with the other athletes is really important.”
Pearson mingled with the squad but didn’t take to the track when ‘s athletics team trained at Brisbane’s Nudgee College on Saturday.
She will aim to complete four hurdles sessions before racing.
“I’m probably 90 per cent there,” she said. “It’s going to be an issue all the way through; it’s a matter of how much pain I can be out of when I race.
“That’s the main focus, getting me out of pain.”
Pearson isn’t focusing on her rivals and admits she’s unsure who will compete in her event, aside from in-form Jamaican Megan Simmonds.
There won’t be any holding back though, with Pearson promising to show her trademark tenacity at Carrara Stadium.
“I’ll be able to block it out as much as possible; nothing’s going to be controlled, it’s going to be all out,” she said.
“If the main competitors come out it’s not going to be an easy race to try and win.”