Lutalo Muhammad insists he feels under no extra pressure to deliver a taekwondo medal for Great Britain despite his controversial selection for the Olympics squad.
Muhammad was chosen by the British Olympics Association ahead of world No 1 Aaron Cook to compete in the -80kg weight division – a decision which prompted an angry campaign in the media.
Despite Cook's camp wishing Muhammad the best of luck for the Games, the 21-year-old revealed in June that he received hate mail. Mohammed, however, insists he is up for the challenge of competing under such a cloud.
"I have done a lot of visualisation and the focus will always be a gold medal," Muhammad told the Manchester Evening News.
"It's such a fantastic opportunity with it being a home Olympics. I feel like I am in the shape of my life and I am very optimistic I can do very well.
"If I perform to the best of my ability then I can absolutely get on top of the podium. It does not matter who is in front of me."
"The only pressure or extra pressure that will be put on me, will be from myself. I have an expectation of what I can do. So, I think that's the only thing that can put extra pressure on me. Any pressure from the audience or the media won't affect me at all."