Adam Gemili today vowed to continue his university studies despite waking up as the second fastest man in the Commonwealth.
Gemili, 20, a student at the University of East London, won silver last night in the men’s 100m in Glasgow. Today he said it was “like a dream” and he had to pinch himself when he woke up.
He will receive his medal at Hampden Park tonight and will be back in the stadium on Friday and Saturday for the 4x100m sprint heats and final, in which he is likely to run the anchor leg against Usain Bolt as Team England challenge Jamaica for gold.
The former Chelsea trainee footballer left Stamford Bridge after seven seasons to play for Dagenham and Redbridge. But he gave up football completely to concentrate on athletics three years ago.
He has one year remaining on his Sports and Exercise Science with Human Biology at UEL and the Dartford Grammar School pupil insisted he is determined to see it through and graduate next year.
He told me: “The way my university helped me out and work with my coach and the rest of my team, we will get it done. I’ve one more year of university left. One last push and I will graduate with a good degree and I will be happy. “
Gemili spent an hour this morning patiently answering numerous questions from the media about how it felt to win a silver medal and whether he would run directly against Usain Bolt.
Referring to his medal, he added: “I did manage to get a couple of hours’ sleep but i’m still in shock really.
“It’s my first senior medal and it’s done on home soil. I’m still in shock I have got a silver medal.
“As soon as the gun went off I don’t really remember much until right at the end. My mind just went blank and I ytried to get to the line as quickly as I could.
“Hopefully I’m going to have a reasonable career, fingers crossed, if my body lets me.”
He said he was happy to run against Bolt in the anchor leg of the relay. “Whatever leg the relay coach wants me to run, I will run. I’m not bothered as long as I play my part for the team.”
The runner with Blackheath & Bromley Harriers tweeted this morning: “So I’ve woken up this morning and it turns out it wasn’t just a dream. It really did happen. Commonwealth Games Silver medalist!
“My first senior medal and I really am over the moon.”