London 2012: Jenny Meadows injury hits Olympic hopes

Former world and European 800m bronze medallist Jenny Meadows has suffered a further setback in her bid to be selected for the Olympics after aggravating her Achilles injury.

She has not raced all year and has now pulled out of Thursday's 800m semi-finals at the European Championships.

Meadows, 31, says she would appeal if not selected for the Olympic Games.

"You've got to do everything. It's not a hobby, it's not a profession, it's literally my life," she said.

Meadows and the 800m

  • 1 min 59.39 secs - Meadows' time to win bronze medal at European Championships (Barcelona, 2010)
  • 1 min 58.60 secs - Meadows' best run in 2011 (Crystal Palace)
  • 1 min 57.93 secs - Meadows' personal best (Berlin, 2009)
  • 1 min 54.82 secs - winning time at last Olympics (Pamela Jelimo, Kenya)
  • 1 min 53.28 secs - world record (Jarmila Kratochvilova, Munich, 1983)
  • 1min 59.90 secs - Olympic 'A' qualifying time

Meadows, who secured the 800m bronze medal at the World Championships three years ago and also took bronze at the 2010 European championships, has an Olympic 'A' standard qualifying time from last year but, having missed last weekend's UK trials, she may now be relying on a discretionary place if she is to line up at London 2012.

Lynsey Sharp and Jemma Simpson - who finished first and second in the trials - could guarantee their places by recording the 'A' standard of one minute 59.90 seconds in Helsinki.

If Sharp and Simpson qualify, Meadows will have to rely on the UK Athletics selection panel to pick her in the discretionary third spot.

"It has been a battle to get back to full fitness after suffering an Achilles tear earlier this year," said the Wigan athlete.

But she said she "has never been fitter", having trained intensively throughout the winter, and had been "ready to come [to Helsinki] and compete for a medal".

Meadows blames her latest problem on the flight to Helsinki.

"My injury seems to have reacted badly to the flight and while we all genuinely believed I would be ready to get to the start line, this setback means I'm so close yet so far," she said.

There was good news for the men's 400m hurdlers, however, as Rhys Williams and Nathan Woodward qualified for the final.

Williams finished first in his semi-final with a time of 49.63 seconds, while Woodward, who finished fourth in his race, qualified as one of the fastest losers with a time of 49.68 seconds.