Jones wants European gold as Rio looms

Jade Jones

Jade Jones won taekwondo gold at the European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan in June 2015

Olympic champion Jade Jones says she is determined to win gold at the European Taekwondo Championships in Switzerland next month as she continues her preparations for the Rio Olympics.

The London 2012 gold medallist has all but qualified for Rio having already secured Team GB a -57kg place.

European Games champion Jones won the German Open on Sunday and wants to win another title in Montreux in May.

“I’m definitely going there to get the gold,” said the 23-year-old.

“I wouldn’t say I need a gold but I still haven’t got a European gold medal.

“I’m really going there hungry for that gold medal.

“I want to be European, world and Olympic gold medallist.”

Victory at the German Open came on Jones’ return from a knee problem, having missed March’s Dutch Open and April’s President’s Cup with the injury.

Jones used the event in Hamburg to improve her fitness before the European Championships in Montreux, Switzerland from 19-22 May.

“Going into my first competition this year and fighting so well, I was really happy with it,” she said.

“I did a lot of strengthening and rehab [on the injury] and now it feels really strong and I feel really fit again.”

Jones, from Flint, was 19 when she beat China’s Yuzhuo Hou to win the women’s -57kg title at the 2012 Olympics.

But she missed out on a medal at the World Taekwondo Championships in Russia in May 2015 amid controversy when the electronic scoring system froze during her quarter-final.

Now though she is hoping to defend her Olympic title in Brazil.

“London was just the best experience of my life and to only have been 19 and to win an Olympic gold medal on home soil, I don’t think I can beat that moment.

“But to go to Rio and do it again and show it wasn’t a fluke and to become double Olympic champion, that [would be] legendary status and that’s what I really want to do.”

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