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'I'm always afraid of losing' - Annalise Murphy's Olympic sacrifices and her hunger for success in Tokyo

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Annalise Murphy celebrates with her silver medal after the Women's Laser Radial Medal race during the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Annalise Murphy celebrates with her silver medal after the Women's Laser Radial Medal race during the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Annalise Murphy celebrates with her silver medal after the Women's Laser Radial Medal race during the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

“Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion”, a quote famously accredited to Muhammad Ali could just as easily apply to Olympic sailor, Annalise Murphy.

If I’d won a medal at the London Olympics, I don’t know if I’d have what it takes to win a medal in Rio,” says Murphy over the phone during lockdown. “I spent four years learning what it would take to win a medal from losing the one in London.”

For the Rio Olympics cycle, the suffering that would make Murphy a champion asked more of her than the usual preparation. This time, Murphy had to lose weight. Like cycling, running and boxing, there’s an element of ‘making weight’ in sailing, of being light enough to perform at a physical peak, while remaining strong.