THE woman who may have ended Sarah Stevenson’s career has praised her as an ‘amazing person’.
American Paige McPherson beat Doncaster’s Stevenson 5-1 in the first round of the Olympic Games taekwondo competition before losing in the quarter finals against Turkey’s Nur Tatar.
But Stevenson, aged 29, is seen as one of the sport’s most inspirational figures particularly after winning the World Championship last year while both of her parents were battling terminal illness.
The 21-year-old McPherson, who moved from South Dakota to Miami to train for the Olympics after watching the 2008 Games on the TV, said: “She means a lot. Not just because she’s an amazing athlete, but she’s an amazing person as well.
“When I beat her she took it. I will say it was anyone’s day and today it was my day and not hers. I’d be happy to have a career like hers.
“Never fought her before. She’s an amazing competitor.
“She’s very well rounded in her techniques and today because of her knee (it didn’t help her).”