Eastbourne’s Seb Rodger has his sights set firmly on a place in the final of this year’s Commonwealth Games and believes he is capable of winning a medal after an amazing 2013 for the young athlete.
The 400m hurdler catapulted himself onto the world stage, finding himself on the podium at the under-23 Championships, before being selected for team GB at the World Championships, where he reached the final at his first attempt and beat reigning champion Dai Greene along the way.
To cap it off Rodger was also named Sussex Sports Personality Of The Year.
“It was an incredible year for me,” he said. “To find myself at the under-23 winning silver and then to go to the World Champs, it was like a dream.”
After being thrown in at the deep-end Rodger looks comfortable at the highest level and he realised he could compete with the very best in the sport while racing in the Diamond League last season.
“The line-up for that was better than the 2012 Olympic Final,” Rodger said. “It was then that it really dawned on me that these guys were not a million miles away from me.”
The Commonwealth Games start on July 23 and after Rodger admitted that he was nailed on for a place in the team, his attentions are now focussed squarely on a medal. He does, however, understand that it will be a tough ask but it is by no means out of the question.
“I will take every race as it comes and obviously I have to be realistic. But my aim is to make it to the final and from there, anything can happen,” he said.
Looking further afield ,the ambitious Rodger is hoping a repeat performance in 2014 will set a platform for an assault on the 2016 Olympics in Rio. And with the Worlds greatest sporting spectacle not too far away, this year might prove to be even more crucial than the last.
“This is even more important for me as I’ve been recognised now. The Olympics is where I want to be and it’s now become a very realistic possibility.”