Highgate Harriers Ogbechie inspired as runner-up in One to Watch SportsAid award
- Credit: Archant
Highgate Harriers high-jumper Dominic Ogbechie believes being named one of the runners-up for SportsAid’s One to Watch award has allowed him to put his achievements into context.
The 16-year-old from Belsize Park attended London’s City Hall for a ceremony alongside SportsAid alumni such as Greg Rutherford, Nekoda Smythe-Davis and Morgan Lake, as boxer Caroline Dubois claimed the 2018 title.
And Ogbechie – who jumped 2.22m to break the under-15 world record earlier this year – was delighted by the recognition, as well as the chance to meet a certain hero of his.
“I met Greg Rutherford. We’d had connections on social media, but it was the first time that I’d spoken to him,” he said.
“It’s inspiring to meet somebody you’ve always looked up to, especially his massive performance at London 2012. It’s amazing to meet such a role model. Now that it’s all over I realise how far I’ve come.
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“From 1,000 to top 10, to then make the top three is sensational, to know SportsAid have been watching me, that they recognise me as an upcoming talent is very convincing.
“To know I’ve made such progress in 12 months makes me realise how far I’ve come and how much more there is to go.”
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Despite missing out on to Dubois, Ogbechie and fellow runner-up Calvin Tarczy received SportsAid equipment grants.
The award was presented at the end of the night, which was sponsored by long-term SportsAid partner Royal Bank of Canada, and saw many of SportsAid’s alumni celebrate the next generation of British talent.
And Olympic gold medalist Rutherford was tasked with handing the award to Dubois, something the long jumper admitted was a great honour as he cast his eye over the future stars coming through the ranks.
“For me coming and meeting the next generation of athletes and having the honour of the presenting the One-to-Watch is a big deal,” said Rutherford.
“To see these youngsters coming through, looking incredibly special and genuine superstars of the future, it’s a fantastic thing. Something SportsAid does, is highlights the facts we have these incredible youngsters coming through, and sport is a really bright future for an awful lot of youngsters.”
*You can help support the next generation of British Olympians and Paralympians by making a regular or one-off donation to SportsAid. Visit sportsaid.org.uk/get-involved/make-a-donation/ for further information.