Hubbard has no regrets, stays 'true to sport'

7:54 pm on 9 April 2018

Despite having to withdraw from her Commonwealth Games event, transgender athlete Laurel Hubbard says she has no regrets about attempting the ambitious lift that undid her.

New Zealand's Laurel Hubbard.
Weightlifting, Women's +90kg 2018. Carrara Sports Hall. Commonwealth Games, Gold Coast, Australia. Monday 9 April 2018. © Copyright photo: Andrew Cornaga /

Photo: © Copyright Andrew Cornaga / Photosport Ltd 2018

The New Zealand weightlifter came unstuck when she went for a new Games record on the Gold Coast, injuring her elbow.

A silver medallist from last year's World Champs, Laurel was the clear favourite in the 90+kg division.

She put herself in the lead after a confident first lift at 120kg in the snatch.

Hubbard was unsuccessful in her second attempt at 127kg and in a surprising move, went for a Commonwealth record and personal best of 132kg in her third attempt.

The 40-year-old's elbow gave out and she was forced to withdraw at the half-way point, despite being in the gold medal position.

Hubbard said afterwards she had no regrets about attempting the weight.

"I believe that to be true to sport you really have to try to be the best that you can and I'm happy with the decisions I made."

Given the opposition from some quarters to her inclusion in the women's division, there was concern she would get a prickly reception but Hubbard received a heart-warming welcome.

"The crowd was absolutely magnificent, I felt just like a big embrace ...there was no indication at all today that they were anything other than absolutely fantastic so a real credit to the Australian people and also the broader sporting community."

Hubbard seemed determined to put a show on for the crowd.

"I wanted to give them something that reflected the best I could do and my only real regret today is that I was unable to show them.

"I think you have to be true to yourself and I hope in this case, that's what I've done."

Hubbard was remarkably philosophical.

"It wouldn't be true if I said I wasn't unhappy at the moment but the nature of sport means that things don't always go your way and it is what it is."

Hubbard said she would have to wait for a scan but it was likely she had ruptured a ligament.

In the 90kg division, Tracey Lambrechs didn't lift in her final attempt at 126kg, instead she took her shoes off, signalling her retirement.

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