Published: 00:01, 06 October 2016
Olympic gold medallist Susannah Townsend has vowed to come back stronger after undergoing surgery on a knee injury which could see her sidelined for nine months.
Less than two months have passed since the 27-year-old Canterbury star helped GB’s women overcome the Netherlands on penalties to claim gold in Rio, something she claimed was a ‘dream come true’.
However, after swapping Polo Farm for a stint playing in Belgium for Ghent side La Gantoise, her season has been cut short by a cartilage problem in her left knee which saw her go under the knife in London on Tuesday.
Townsend admitted: “Over the next nine months I will be experiencing something I have never experienced before. Four weeks of bone bruising is my longest injury to date. I am going to learn a lot about myself.
“It’s not ideal obviously but I need to make sure I really am sensible and do this rehab properly. The team psychologist is going to be sick of me by the end of this as I will be working closely with her to make sure I tackle this mentally in the right way.”
She added: “I know it is going to be a tough time for me but I am certainly ready to tackle it head first and come back better than before.”
Townsend played in all eight games as GB claimed gold in Brazil and she admitted: “The positives are I managed to get through the Olympics without any problems, in fact I felt the fittest I have ever been and in the best condition of my life.
“This also comes at a time when the international calendar isn’t as busy as other years. I am going to miss training with the team but I hope to be back in time to fight for my place when I am back at full fitness.
“I want to continue to play for GB and England so I will try and learn to be patient, not rush anything and do everything that I am told.
“My team-mates know when I miss one training session it drives me crazy. I will struggle as it is such a big part of my life but I need to accept this challenge and come back stronger from it.”
To follow Townsend's road to recovery, you can read her blog here.
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