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Olympic heroine Jones seeks to regain appetite for success

LONDON -- Jade Jones admitted on Monday that it has been hard to get motivated again since she became Great Britain's first ever taekwondo Olympic gold medalist in London in July.

The bubbly 19-year-old, born in the tiny North Wales village of Bodelwyddan, added that the significance of the achievement would never quite sink in.

Jones gained revenge in London on double world champion Hou Yuzhuo of China with a 6-4 win in the final, Hou having beaten Jones in the world championship final.

However, she said that after taking a well-earned rest, the return to her five-hour a day training routine in Manchester, England, had not been a smooth path.

“I don't think that winning the gold will ever sink in,” she told AFP in a telephone interview.

“I took a bit of a break and let my hair down before I got mentally focused once again.

“However, the proper hunger has gone a bit. It's a bit hard to get motivated again. I can't wait for the big competition again and that is the world championships in Mexico next year.”

There she realizes that because of her status as Olympic champion she will be the woman to beat.

“I got silver last time and I want gold this time,” said Jones, who is backed up by a nutritionist and a psychologist among other support staff supplied by the federation.

“I know I have got to fight to stay on top as everyone is going out there to beat me. I have got to get bigger and faster.”

Jones, who spends her leisure time shopping with friends and relaxing with her family, said she could already feel the impact her victory has had on the sport in Britain.

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