Sam dreaming of Olympic gold

Sam Murray with the gold and silver she won at last year's World Championships
Sam Murray with the gold and silver she won at last year's World Championships
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Samantha Murray’s motivation still burns bright as she prepares to defend her World Championship title in Berlin next week.

The Preston-born star has achieved so much in her modern pentathlon career.

Winning the world title last year in Warsaw, Poland, is possibly her greatest achievement to date, although the silver medal she won at the 2012 Olympic Games, in London, is arguably the biggest highlight.

It was earlier this year that the 25-year-old hinted that she may look to retire after next year’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

However, Murray dismissed suggestions that she has set any kind of retirement date and is still as hungry as ever.

She is fiercely determined to go one better in Brazil in 2016 than she did in London and is totally focused on trying to become only the fifth athlete in the sport’s history to win the world title more than once.

“I’ve kind of let go of that (retirement) really,” said Murray, who hails from the Ribble Valley.

“I don’t think I could do all that I am doing in the sport, if I was going to retire.

“I really don’t know. You don’t know what’s going to happen or how you will feel in the future.

“Winning Olympic gold is the dream.

“That is what drives me on every day when I’m training – upgrading that medal from silver to gold.”

Murray is rightly regarded as one of the favourites in Germany next week, but knows she faces some stiff competition none more so from the woman who finished ahead of her at the last Olympics – Lithuanian’s Laura Asadauskait, who is in a rich vein of form currently.

“When you’ve got the Olympic champion Asadauskait who is still very strong and winning every competition she enters then I’ve still got a big challenge ahead of me to win gold at next year’s Olympics.

“But you have got to keep your focus on what’s happening now.

“A lot can happen between now and next year

“When I think back to 2011 and how much I changed as an athlete in a year you can’t get too ahead of yourself.

“You’ve got to keep focused on what is in front of you now.”

Murray, who won at World Cup meeting earlier this year in Sacromento, California, will be gunning for gold in both the individual and team event in Berlin.

First she will partner fellow GB athlete Joanna Muir in the relay, before turning her attentions to the individual event, with the final scheduled for Sunday, July 4.

“I am going in the relay with a junior athlete called Joanna Muir,” Murray said.

“I think we will be a strong team and have a really strong chance of winning or getting a medal.

“I am looking forward to that.”