'I can't stop smiling' - triumphant Sally Conway celebrates her bronze medal

'I can't stop smiling' - Sally Conway celebrates bronze Credit: Mike Egerton/PA

A Thornbury-born judo star has won Team GB's latest bronze medal.

Sally Conway, who lived in the South Gloucestershire town until the age of 18, had been knocked out at the last-16 stage at London 2012 and had not been tipped as a potential medal winner.

But the 29-year-old showed what she was made of when she secured victory with a single throw halfway through the contest.

We started by asking her if realisation had hit, and she had woken up to the fact she was now an Olympic medalist.

I didn't get much sleep last night so I didn't really have anything to wake up for, I've just been thinking about it all night, I can't stop smiling, I'm so happy.

Sally Conway
Sally Conway fights Austria's Bernadette Graf during the women's -70kg judo bronze match Credit: Xinhua/SIPA USA/PA

Sally, who grew up and lived in Thornbury until moving to Edinburgh aged 18, says she can't describe the feeling of winning a medal.

After beating the world champion Gevrise Emane of France to put her through to the semi-final. She lost the match, putting her out of contention for either the gold or silver medal.

But - just ten minutes later she was back on the mat fighting Bernadette Graf of Austria for the bronze medal.

Sally learnt judo in Thonrbury judo club with her coach Stan McCarthay before her dad took over the all-important role.

When she left school she trained at Bisham Abbey, before it closed in 2006. From there she moved to Edinburgh.

She said she was aware many had been cheering her on around from her former home in Thornbury to the rest of the world.

They've all supported me throughout of my whole judo journey and I can't honestly thank them enough. I've had so many messages I haven't even got round to reading them all yet, I just can't thank everybody - my club, everyone around the world, all my friends and family back home. If it wasn't for them I wouldn't be standing here today with this medal round my neck.

Sally Conway
Sally Conway in action against Bernadette Graf of Austria Credit: Lukas Schulze/DPA/PA