Claire Azzopardi: 'Don’t allow negative people to steal your joy'

The 19-year-old record-breaking long-jumper placed fourth while representing Malta at the Games of Small States of Europe for the long jump this year. In 2019 Azzopardi also competed at the European Athletics Promotion held in Malta for the triple jump and the long jump in Malta, where she came first and fourth respectively

What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

Ask my mum for a cup of tea and spend some time with my dog Dante before I leave for training.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t allow negative people to steal your joy; surround yourself with people who genuinely support your successes as well as give you a helping hand when in need.

What do you never leave the house without?

My phone.

Pick three words that describe yourself

Persistent, committed, anxious.

What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

Representing Malta in both gymnastics, which I practised for 13 years, and athletics, which I practise at the moment.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?

Eating junk food, since very often I have to follow a strict diet due to training and competitions.

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

The hard times in life are the most important ones, as they teach you how to move forward and always think positive.

What’s the most expensive thing you’ve ever bought?

Probably clothes and training shoes... my parents buy the rest!

Who’s your inspiration?

Simone Biles, a gymnast who has overcome various life challenges and is now an Olympic gold medallist.

What has been your biggest challenge?

Learning to drive was my biggest nightmare, however juggling between work, education and training as well as having time to spend with friends and family is a continuous challenge.

If you weren’t an athlete what would you be doing?

Full-time gymnastics coach.

Do you believe in God?

Yes.

If you could have dinner with any person, dead or alive, who would it be?

My grandpa, I miss him dearly. He passed away when I was 11 years old.

What’s your worst habit?

Leaving dirty clothes and training bags all around the house.

What are you like when you’re drunk?

Unrecognisable... very talkative and not at all shy.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

Laziness, as I simply can’t understand how someone can spend a whole day literally doing nothing.

What music would you have played at your funeral?

Definitely not church music.

What is your most treasured material possession?

Training clothes and shoes.

What is your earliest memory?

The first holiday with my family in the UK. I had filled my own soft toy at the soft toy factory and still have it up to date.

When did you last cry, and why?

When I realised that I won the silver medal at the Games of the Small States of Europe.

Who would you most like to meet?

David Beckham.

What’s your favourite food?

Pepperoni pizza.

Who’s your favourite person on social media right now?

Maryna Bekh – a Ukrainian long jumper.

If you could travel in time, where would you go?

Back to the year 2015, travelling abroad several times with the national gymnastics team, and going to Iceland where I won two medals – a dream come true.

What book are you reading right now?

I never enjoyed reading.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

Flying: it would definitely improve my long and triple jump results.

What’s one thing you want to do before you die?

My wish is to travel to as many places around the world as possible.

What music are you listening to at the moment?

R’n’B.

In the shower or when you’re working out, what do you sing/listen to?

Also R’n’B.

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