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Haines Aiming High As Brits Face Australian Challenge

Ben Haines wants a slice of his team mate’s action and he hopes this weekend’s Australian Open in Melbourne will provide it.

Haines is one of four GB Academy fighters in action Down Under including European Games bronze medallist, Lutalo Muhammad.

And the successes of Muhammad, Jade Jones and Charlie Maddock in Azerbaijan plus the exploits of World Championship gold, silver and bronze medallists, Bianca Walkden, Damon Sansum and Rachelle Booth as made him hungry for success of his own.

A Turkish Open silver medallist earlier this year Haines says:”Seeing my team-mates do well in previous competitions inspires me to go on and do well in my next competition.

“The season so far is going well. Obviously I still have a a lot of room for development,” agrees the 21-year-old Portsmouth born player.

“But I’m doing everything I can possible in all areas of the Academy to make sure I can deliver my full potential on the mat.

“And then, even if I don’t get the result I wanted (for me that’s winning), I can come off saying I’ve done everything I could. And the go away and amend the things that cost me the match.”

Haines will fight at 74kg when the tournament begins tomorrow. “I’m happy at either -68kg or -74kg but I can make -74 naturally because I weigh 72/73kg.

“It just means I feel a lot more relaxed because I don’t have to diet. So, that’s one less thing off my mind when I’m approaching a competition.”

Haines is making his first trip to Australia and laughs:”The weather is better back home.

“So, far though everything is good: hotel, rooms, food. The only bad things is you only get 30 minutes of wifi a day, which hasn’t gone down to well with us athletes.”


Friday, June 26

-54kg: Max Cater (Southampton)
-74kg: Ben Haines (Portsmouth)

Saturday, June 27:

-68kg: Martin Stamper (Liverpool)
-80kg: Lutalo Muhammad (Walthamstow)

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