After an unfortunate setback in training which ultimately ended her 2014 Commonwealth Games dreams, Louise Hazel has started to make the transition away from competition.
The multi-eventer retired from the sport back in September, 2013, but came back to the track earlier this year in a bid to defend her 2010 Commonwealth title.
The 28-year-old came out of retirement with serious intentions to claim gold in Glasgow but a recent bout of ulcerative colitis, a condition she suffers from, temporarily forced her out of training and in the end out of the running.
“It was always going to be a challenge to comeback in time and unfortunately I couldn’t afford to have any injuries or illness,” Hazel spoke.
The ex-heptathlete will hang her spikes and try her hand at commentating, for BBC 5 live, instead, with hopes of making the transition a more permanent role post-Glasgow.
“100% my dream would be to be a regular member of the BBC Athletics team for Rio 2016! This is just the beginning for me in my transition away from competition,” the reigning Commonwealth champion said.
Spectating and reporting on an event she had once hoped to be a part of will no doubt be hard for the Birchfield Harrier, but a full-spirited Hazel is wholly focused on the prospects that lie ahead, instead.
“There will be a part of me that will be jumping at every hurdle, but I pride myself on being professional, whether on the track or off of it. So as much as I would like to be competing in Glasgow I am really looking forward to the new challenge of punditry and I grateful that BBC Radio 5 Live have presented this opportunity to me,” the 28-year-old said.
Despite her withdrawal from the competition Hazel predicts “exciting stuff” from the women’s heptathlon in Glasgow, dubbing England’s Katarina Johnson-Thompson as favourite for the title.
Her former team-mate will undoubtedly have stiff competition from an in-form Brianne Theisen-Eaton though.
Hazel spoke: “We saw in Gotzis a close competition between Johnson-Thompson and Theisen-Eaton so I expect this will continue is Glasgow if both girls remain in tip-top shape.”