I've done all I can do, says Olympic hope Jessica Ennis after last warm-up

 

Paula Radcliffe Stadium

Toni Minichiello, the man who has coached Jessica Ennis since she was 11, professed himself reasonably satisfied after the Sheffield heptathlete completed her final competitive outing before the Olympic Games on Saturday.

Ennis took part in the long jump and javelin competitions at the Loughborough European Athletics Permit meeting, where a small but warmly supportive crowd of perhaps 300 saw her produce a technically sound, though unspectacular, performance.

In the long jump, normally one of Ennis's stronger elements but one in which she has had problems with her run-up recently, the 26-year-old over-stepped the board on only one of her six jumps. Her longest effort, her last, was 6.21 metres, some 30cm below the personal best she equalled in breaking Denise Lewis's long-standing British heptathlon record in Austria in May, but it was always apparent she was thinking more about technique than distance.

The same was true of her efforts in the javelin later in the day. A winter working with the former World Championship bronze medallist Mick Hill has produced a more grooved and rhythmic throwing action in her weakest discipline, with the result that she has consistently thrown more than 45m this season, with a personal best of 47.11m – if she matches that in London she will almost certainly become Olympic champion. On Saturday she opened with 44.73m, but in difficult conditions did not better it.

Even so, the habitually cautious Minichiello said he was "happy enough".

"I'm much happier with the long jump because she was jumping into headwinds, and I think it's where it wants to be. On the javelin, Mick was OK with how she was throwing – it's just a bit more incentive to work hard, to not be complacent in the last couple of weeks.

"We'd have liked to have finished on two PBs [personal bests] but I don't think it makes too much difference whether you've done well or badly, to be honest, you all start on zero points. We've still got two weeks of training and two weeks of tapering."

It was, said Ennis, "a bit weird" to think that her very next competitive outing would be the event for which she has spent four years building, and the one which may define her as an athlete.

Her overriding emotion, however, appeared to be one of relief: both that the waiting is nearly over and that she is fit, well and in form.

"With the long jump I wasn't pleased with the distance but I was much happier with my run-up and the way I was getting on the board. Now I just have to get back to working on my flight and then, hopefully, everything will come together.

"The javelin wasn't too bad, I don't want to be getting in my big throws too early. The rain didn't bother me – most likely it's going to be raining in London, isn't it? – but while it's always nice to throw a PB I'm happy with where I am."

And overall? "I'm just glad that, touch wood, I'm in once piece," she smiled. "It's nice to be in this position. Even though things went reasonably well indoors in the winter and I felt in good shape, you just don't know what's going to happen.

"I've done all I can do. I'll just be going away to the holding camp [in Portugal] now to sharpen up the best I can. I've done all the hard work. Now it's just about putting it together in competition over two days.

"So I'm just going to continue training sensibly and making sure everything is going in the right direction. But I'm obviously very happy to be in this shape."

18 Days to go until the Olympics

18 Olympic medals won by the Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina – the most in any one sport.

News
Waitrose will be bringing in more manned tills
newsOverheard in Waitrose: documenting the chatter in 'Britain's poshest supermarket'
Life & Style
life
Arts & Entertainment
Jack Gleeson as Joffrey Baratheon in Game of Thrones
tv
Arts & Entertainment
Ken Loach (left) and Mike Leigh who will be going head to head for one of cinema's most coveted prizes at this year's Cannes Film Festival
filmKen Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Arts & Entertainment
Ian Anderson, the leader of British rock band Jethro Tull, (right) and British guitar player Martin Barre (left) perform on stage
musicJethro Tull frontman leads ‘prog rock’ revival
Sport
Gareth Bale dribbled from inside his own half and finished calmly late in the final to hand Real a 2-1 win at the Mestalla in Valencia
sport
Arts & Entertainment
Who laughs lass: Jenny Collier on stage
comedy... writes Jenny Collier, the comedian whose recent show was cancelled because there were 'too many women' on the bill
News
House proud: keeping up with the Joneses now extends to children's playhouses
newsLuxury playhouses now on the market for as much as £800
News
news
Extras
indybest
News
The academic, Annamaria Testa, has set out on her website a list of 300 English words that she says Italians ought to stop using
newsAcademic speaks out against 'Italianglo' - the use of English words in Italian language
Life & Style
tech
Arts & Entertainment
Ricky Gervais at a screening of 'Muppets Most Wanted' in London last month
tvRicky Gervais on the return of 'Derek' – and why he still ignores his critics
Sport
Luis Suarez of Liverpool celebrates his goal
sport
Arts & Entertainment
James Franco and Chris O'Dowd in Of Mice and Men on Broadway
theatreReview: Of Mice and Men, Longacre Theatre
Caption competition
Caption competition
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail. If you think it's awful, then just don't watch it'

Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail'

As the second series of his divisive sitcom 'Derek' hits screens, the comedian tells James Rampton why he'll never bow to the critics who habitually circle his work
Mad Men series 7, TV review: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge

Mad Men returns for a final fling

The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground as there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit

Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground

Technology giant’s scientists say there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit
Westminster is awash with tales of young men being sexually harassed - but it's far from being just a problem in politics

Is sexual harassment a fact of gay life?

Westminster is awash with tales of young men being sexually harassed - but it's far from being just a problem in politics
Moshi Monster creator Michael Acton Smith: The man behind a British success story

Moshi Monster creator Michael Acton Smith

Acton Smith launched a world of virtual creatures who took the real world by storm
Kim Jong-un's haircut: The Independent heads to Ealing to try out the dictator's do

Our journalist tries out Kim Jong-un's haircut

The North Korean embassy in London complained when M&M Hair Academy used Kim Jong-un's image in the window. Curious, Guy Pewsey heads to the hair salon and surrenders to the clippers
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A forgotten naval victory in which even Nature played a part

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A forgotten naval victory in which even Nature played a part
Vespa rides on with launch of Primavera: Iconic Italian scooter still revving up millions of sales

Vespa rides on with launch of the Primavera

The Vespa has been a style icon since the 1950s and the release this month of its latest model confirms it has lost little of its lustre
Record Store Day: Independent music shops can offer a tempting alternative to downloads

Record Store Day celebrates independent music shops

This Saturday sees a host of events around the country to champion the sellers of well-grooved wax
Taunton's policy of putting philosophy at heart of its curriculum is one of secrets of its success

Education: Secret of Taunton's success

Taunton School, in Somerset, is one of the country's leading independent schools, says Richard Garner
10 best smartphones

10 best smartphones

With a number of new smartphones on the market, we round up the best around, including some more established models
Mickey Arthur: Aussie tells ECB to stick with Ashley Giles

Mickey Arthur: Aussie tells ECB to stick with Ashley Giles

The former Australia coach on why England must keep to Plan A, about his shock at their collapse Down Under, why he sent players home from India and the agonies of losing his job
Homelessness: Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

Zubairi Sentongo swapped poverty in Uganda for homelessness in Britain. But a YMCA scheme connected him with a couple offering warmth and shelter
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park
The pain of IVF

The pain of IVF

As an Italian woman vows to keep the babies from someone else’s eggs, Julian Baggini ponders how the reality of childbirth is often messier than the natural ideal