PARALYMPICS: Fantastic crowd pushes Cwmbran's Duke to a personal best in shot
CWMBRAN’S Kyron Duke hailed the incredible support of the home crowd as he broke his personal best to finish fifth in the Olympic Stadium.
The 19-year-old previously competed for Wales in powerlifting at the 2010 Commonwealth Games but that didn’t prepare him for the London experience.
Duke couldn’t believe the noise from the patriotic supporters as he just missed out on a medal in the F40 shot put final at his first Paralympics.
The Cwmbran athlete, who has achondroplasia, finished fifth after setting a new personal best with a throw of 11.24m in his sixth and final attempt.
“It was immense. I’m ecstatic, buzzing. It was crazy to compete in front of 80,000 people, something that I’ll never forget,” he said.
“It’s so uplifting and it pushes you on to do more. My mum, sister, brother-in-law and lots of others are here and that’s awesome too.
“I talked to some of the other guys who’d already been out there and the crowd gives you so much adrenaline it’s unbelievable.
“It can overwhelm you and you become over-energised so I just chilled a bit before going out there,” he added.
“But I needed to be aggressive when I was competing and I did it.”
Duke aims to emulate his older cousin Gareth Duke, who won gold, silver and bronze in the pool in 2004 and 2008, by winning a medal tomorrow when he competes in the F40 javelin final.
He won bronze in the World Championships last year in the javelin, which is his favourite discipline.
“Javelin is my main event and I’m going to do my best to get a medal,” he said.
“I’m feeling good, training has gone well. I’ve been mostly concentrating on the javelin and it will be crazy. It’s going to be even better than today.”