Former Felsted schoolboy who broke back twice wins Tokyo bronze
- Credit: PA
A former Felsted School pupil has won bronze in the Tokyo 2020 men's trap shooting final.
Matthew Coward-Holley, from Chelmsford, had a promising schoolboy rugby career but took up shooting after breaking his back twice.
The 26-year-old athlete secured Team GB's 17th medal of the competition.
His bronze medal title replicates Ed Ling's success in Rio 2016.
Felsted school headteacher Chris Townsend said Matthew's career is "inspiring".
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Mr Townsend said: "We are delighted for Matt!
"We have been following his progress with great interest over the years and are delighted that his hard work and dedication has been recognised.
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"We look forward to him returning to Felsted to inspire our pupils about his Olympic experience."
Matthew is Felsted School's first Olympic medal winner since Los Angeles 1984, when Robert Cattrall won Bronze as captain for Great Britain's hockey team.
In 2019, Matthew became the first Briton to win a world title in an individual Olympic shotgun discipline.
Matthew said: "To come away with a medal, to be European and world champion, and now Olympic bronze medallist is a little bit surreal.
“We all come here fighting for gold but, at the end of the day, it’s the Olympics and any medal is phenomenal.
“It still hasn’t sunk in yet, I think it’s going to take a while to comprehend that medal hanging around my neck."
Matthew scored 33 out of 40 targets.
He fired 14 consecutive hits to move into medal contention but three misses out of nine saw him place third in the final elimination.
He said: "We had Ed Ling in Rio, Steve Scott [in the Rio 2016 double trap] as well – we like bronze medals."
He added: "I didn’t really imagine this until a couple of years ago when I’d broken onto the scene.
"That was when the Olympic dream became real and it could happen."
The former Felsted schoolboy will return on Saturday (July 31) as part of Team GB's mixed team trap.
He will appear alongside Northern Ireland's Kirsty Hegarty in the mixed team trap event as the duo hope to follow up their World Cup win in Italy in May.
The mixed team trap event takes place on Saturday at 1am UK time.