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Tuesday 28 May, 2024
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Who are Jessica & Jennifer Gadirova?

BY Salman Ahmed Oct 01, 2023. 11:35 pm UPDATED: Oct 01, 2023. 11:35 pm

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THEY are the somersaulting sisters who hope to fall in love in Paris next summer.

While Jessica Gadirova will not have her sister Jennifer to lean on when she defends her global floor gymnastics championship in Antwerp next week, the duo would love to share the Olympic podium once more.

The tumbling twins from Aylesbury, who are ordinarily linked at the hip, will be separated for a few days due to Jennifer’s injury.

They went from playing Just Dance on the family Wii to being among the best gymnasts in the world.

And the two, who will turn 19 next week and are part of Sun Sport’s SEINEsational Seven for Paris 2024, will cross the Channel knowing they have what it takes to shine on the grandest platform.

“One of the things coming up to this Olympics is we have a name for ourselves,” said Jess, who is widely expected to add the world all-around crown to her already hefty medal tally.

“There is going to be more pressure because people assume things, that I could be the Olympic champion.

“In 2021 we were just two young girls who had made the Great Britain Olympic team but were just doing their gymnastics.

“But now it’s the feeling we’ve got more to give.

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“In Tokyo (where they were part of the GB team that took a surprise bronze) we didn’t have any pressure on us.

“We just enjoyed the gymnastics. But that was in Covid, whereas there will be no restrictions in Paris. It’ll be a lot bigger than Tokyo.”

Jessica admitted: “Standing on that podium with a gold medal is something you can imagine – but I’m just trying to not get ahead of myself.

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“I must always stay humble, know where my roots are and not become too big-headed or be ‘I’m going to do this’.

“It’s good to dream big and think that you want to be on the podium and achieve this medal but I don’t want to go over the top.

“If you dream too big and have a 100 per cent expectation that you will win, then if you don’t it’ll be more of a disappointment and heartbreak.

“So not putting yourself under that much pressure reduces the impact of sadness and disappointment.”

Jess Gadirova admits she could not be dreaming of Olympic success without the backing of the National Lottery.

She said: “It’s amazing and having this support definitely helps our sport and us as individuals.

“I appreciate everyone who plays a part in the National Lottery. It allows us to do the sport that we love for a living and carry on achieving these amazing things and focus on being the best we can be.”

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