Snowboarder Katie Ormerod will miss the entire Winter Olympic games in Pyeongchang after fracturing her right heel in training this week.
Team GB now have two fewer chances of gaining a medal at this year’s Winter Olympics; the 20-year-old’s injury leaves both the Slopestyle and Big Air events without a British participant.
The incident happened on Thursday, just a day after she fractured her wrist whilst out in preparation for the Games.
The Yorkshire native remains in a South Korean hospital for the remainder of the week; she posted on Twitter last night prior to having her operation. “After dreaming of competing at the Olympics for years, I got there and received the most bad luck I’ve ever had! Broke my wrist but was determined to compete, but then I severely broke my heel into 2 pieces and having surgery in a couple of hours. Absolutely gutted!”
The 20-year-old then spoke out after her operation: “Yesterday sucked. I was determined to still train, compete and do my best but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be.”
Ormerod had the operation in South Korea’s capital Seoul during which two screws were inserted in her foot. She is expected to stay in hospital for a week.
A British Olympic Association spokeswoman told BBC Sport: “Katie has had the operation and is doing well. Surgery is just the first stage on the road to recovery, but it is good that she has been able to have the surgery quickly.”
What does this mean for Team GB’s medal hopes?
Well four years ago in Sochi, Britain only managed four medals in total, including one gold. They want to prove a point this year as being a nation able to challenge in a niche sporting setting and eventually offer the sort of challenge that the USA, Russia and Canada can put up.
One of Britain’s hopefuls is speed skater Elise Christie who has been dubbed the “Jessica Ennis on skates”, she will be looking to redeem her poor showing at Sochi four years ago where she was disqualified from all three of the events that she was entered into. The event is a national sport in the South Korea so Christie will be something of a celebrity.
Other medal chasers are slopestyle skier James Woods, and reigning Olympic skeleton champion Lizzy Yarnold who is aiming to be the first woman to defend this Olympic title in an event where Great Britain’s women have ruled the roost.
But, after a year-long sabbatical, getting married and dealing with dizzy spells caused by an inner ear problem, she will have to put in her best performances of the season to do that.