Who is Jade Jones? How is the Team GB taekwondo athlete looking to make history at Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Jade Jones is looking to strike Olympic gold for a third time at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
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History beckons Jade Jones at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

The Team GB taekwondo athlete, who topped the podium at London 2012 and Rio 2016, is looking for a third gold medal at the 2021 Olympics.

No other athlete in the sport has won three golds at the Summer Olympics – but Jones is acutely aware of the unpredictable nature of taekwondo.

Jade Jones is looking to strike Olympic gold for a third time at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. (Pic: Getty)Jade Jones is looking to strike Olympic gold for a third time at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. (Pic: Getty)
Jade Jones is looking to strike Olympic gold for a third time at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. (Pic: Getty)
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Who is Jade Jones?

Jones has won gold at the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games in the women's -57kg category, is currently ranked number one in the world in her sport and has won multiple World, European and Grand Prix medals.

Coached by Martin Stamper, the Bodelwyddan born athlete was introduced to taekwondo at the age of 8 by her grandfather to help her learn self defence. She has since gone on to have a glittering career in the sport.

Tokyo Olympics factfile. (Graphic: Mark Hall / JPIMedia)Tokyo Olympics factfile. (Graphic: Mark Hall / JPIMedia)
Tokyo Olympics factfile. (Graphic: Mark Hall / JPIMedia)

She was voted for the BBC Wales Sports Personality of the Year in 2012 and received an MBE for services to taekwondo in the 2013 New Year Honours list, followed by an OBE in the 2020 New Year Honours.

Away from sport, she took part in the E4 reality dating show Celebs Go Dating in 2018 and her Twitter handle @jadejonestkd has more than 80,000 followers on the social media platform.

She was also the focus of a recent BBC documentary Jade Jones: Fighting For Gold which is available now on iPlayer.

What has Jones said ahead of Tokyo 2020?

One last-gasp glancing blow could be the difference between success and failure.

The 28-year-old from Wales is favourite and bullish about her chances of glory but is not allowing herself to get swept up in the emotion surrounding the occasion.

“I feel so lucky to be going for that for that third gold,” she said. “You do get carried away thinking ‘oh my God, it’s going to be mad’.

“It’s been literally such a whirlwind from the very start that I haven’t had time to take it in. To even imagine being Olympic champion once would have been mind-blowing, but to be in a position of going for my third is nuts.

“I’d love to go back to being 19, having no pressure and everything to gain. It is tough being at the top, knowing you constantly have that pressure of being expected to do it. But it’s sport and you learn how to handle it.

“The hard part is I know I can do it, I know I can win. I’ve definitely got the talent and everything I need to get that gold but taekwondo is unpredictable.

“You can be the very best and get flicked in the head in the last second. I just hope it happens and all comes together on that one day like it has before.”

When is Jones in action at Tokyo 2020?

Taekwondo will be among the first events to get under way, with Jones, used to competing towards the back end of the Olympics, looking towards Sunday’s final.

“Usually we’re mid-Olympics or at the end of the Olympics, whereas this time we’re kind of starting it off on the second day,” she said.

“It gives that extra bit of pressure to try and get a medal for GB. But you just end up being focused on your event and your competition.”

Jones is among several women from Team GB looking to win gold at a third successive Olympics alongside the likes of cyclist Laura Kenny, rower Helen Glover and dressage rider Charlotte Dujardin.

“I don’t really know them all that well but I’ve seen some of them at media events and follow their stories on Instagram,” Jones added.

“It’s so amazing and powerful that so many of us are going for that third. It’s bonkers. I just hope I get my one and hopefully we all get them.”

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