Weston's Ethan Nairne gets call-up to represent Great Britain in Youth Olympics
PUBLISHED: 13:00 25 July 2019
A 17-year-old from Weston has been called up to represent Great Britain in Judo at the Youth Olympics in Azerbaijan.
Ethan Nairne will be be competing in his first event in the under-66kg category and the teen, who is studying A Levels at Weston College, says he is delighted to be going to Baku as one of 10 competitors from GB.
"I'm proud that I'm one of the few people in the whole of GB to be going to this event and just looking forward to it," he said.
Nairne took up the sport at the age of four, where his dad Kevin did it as a child, after being inspired by sister Lele and says this is something for all the family.
"It's really special," he said. "About six years ago, my sister just missed out on the opportunity to go to this event and although she had fully qualified she just didn't get to go.
"I think it's really special that I get to go and experience it and it's not only for me, it's for my whole family."
However this year has had its challenges and, after winning a bronze medal in the British Championships, Narine dropped to third in the world rankings and missed out on selection for future competitions.
A strong performance in the English Open saw him pick up a silver, moving him back into the top two ahead of the Scottish Open.
Another second-place finish ensured a trip to the Bremen Open in March and he picked up enough points to become GB's number one and has stayed there.
"I think my year wouldn't have played out the same if that didn't happen to me," he added.
"I wouldn't have worked as hard to make it to where I am now.
"If I had just gone in and won the British, I'm not sure this year would have played out the same because I wouldn't have felt the need to work as hard, it sort of motivated me."
Despite not knowing what is coming up Narine is determined to make the most of his chance.
"Not many people get to go, so you don't really know how great it is until you experience it yourself," he added.
"I've had a couple of people from my club and my sister just telling me stories about how good events like this are and how special they are. I've just got to find out myself really. Apparently they are unexplainable and just amazing."