Inside the Game has recently posted that Australia Rugby sevens star, Emilee Cherry has officially announced that she will delay her retirement to compete at the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Her plans to retire after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was derailed after the Covid-19 pandemic forced the sports industry to put their events on hold. The 28 year old superstar gave birth to a daughter, Alice in June 2019 and later on returned to compete in the International Circuit.
Competition is now scheduled for July 23 to August 8, with the rugby sevens competition set to run from July 26 to 31.
The Australian womens sevens squad are set to defend their Olympic title in Japan this June. We all remember their nail biting finals in the 2016 Rio Olympics against the New Zealand side, 24-17 final score.
“I had to reassess and that took a fair while,” Cherry said, as reported by The Sydney Morning Herald.
“I didn’t just brush it off the shoulder and say, ‘yeah I’ll go another year’.
“I went to [coach] John [Manenti] and said I needed time to go home and see my family.
“I went home for two months and rejuvenated.
“When you miss things and when you’re away from things it gives a better perspective – I definitely came back hungrier.
“A four-year preparation towards an Olympics is exhausting – you chuck a baby in that and it’s very taxing.
“Since we won the last gold, I want to win another one and that never changed.”
Cherry also admitted that the delays have been a blessing in disguise as its given the Australaians more time to prepare and improve their game for the Tokyo Games.
“It’s given us another year and I don’t think we were in the place we needed to be this year,” she said.
“We’re taking it as a blessing in disguise for our team to get better and stronger.
“These last six months, just realising probably we weren’t going to be good enough going to Tokyo this year.
“We’ve got another chance to work really hard and realise we weren’t there and if we need to be the best in the world we need to step up in these next eight months or so.
Other teams that are confirmed to make an appearance in the Tokyo Games are: Japan, Brazil, Britain, Canada, China, Fiji, Kenya, New Zealand and the United States. With two more vacant spots waiting to be filled after the final qualifiers in Monaco.