On This Day in 2016 – Jessica Ennis-Hill announces retirement from athletics

By Sports Desk October 13, 2023

Jessica Ennis-Hill announced her retirement from athletics on this day in 2016.

She had won Olympic gold in the heptathlon at London 2012 and silver at Rio 2016, and retired as a two-time world champion.

Ennis-Hill, then 30, released a statement on her Instagram account to announce her decision and admitted it was “one of the toughest decisions” she had ever had to make during her successful career.

The Sheffield-born heptathlete returned to competition after the birth of her son Reggie in July 2014 and went on to win the World Athletics Championships in Beijing in 2015 having already achieved the qualifying standard for Rio.

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It was her second world heptathlon title after previously achieving the feat in Berlin in 2009 while claiming silver in 2011.

Ennis-Hill’s senior breakthrough came at her only Commonwealth Games in 2006 where she picked up bronze, finishing behind winner and team-mate Kelly Sotherton.

But she was destined for more greatness and won gold at the 2010 European Championships before claiming the World Indoor Pentathlon title in the same year.

The victories were part of her dominance of the sport between 2009 and 2012 ahead of her success at London 2012.

She won the 100 metres hurdles before coming sixth in the high jump and 10th in the shot put. A personal best of 22.83 seconds saw her finish second in the 200 metres and Ennis-Hill was also second in the long jump before she threw a personal best of 47.49 metres in the javelin to finish 10th and put her on the brink of glory.

She earned the Olympic crown with a season’s best of two minutes and eight seconds in the 800 metres to win the race.

Ennis-Hill then called time on her career following the 2016 Olympics after she narrowly failed to retain her Olympic heptathlon title-winning silver behind Belgian Nafissatou Thiam at Rio 2016.

She won the 800m – the final discipline of the competition – but it was not enough to overtake Thiam, who won by 35 points.

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