English cyclist loses half bodyweight but wins bronze medal

An English cyclist who took up the sport to get in shape and then shed nearly half her bodyweight won Commonwealth Games bronze yesterday - and was overcome with emotion at the finish line.

A tearful Hayley Simmonds, 29, looked stunned when she finished third in the women's time trial, the result of years of vigorous training which saw her drop 45kg.

"I showed Julian (Winn, her coach) a picture of me from 2011 and he didn't believe it was me, I lost like 45kg," she said.

"As soon as I started doing time trials, my competitive nature took over, it's been hard."

Simmonds, who now weighs 55kg, describes baking as one of her hobbies.

"There have been times I've wanted to go and eat a big cake," she said.

Also winning bronze in the men's time trial was New Zealand's Hamish Bond, who won two Olympic golds in a glittering rowing career, less than two years after switching sports.

Bond, who formed one of the great rowing partnerships with Eric Murray, was just over two seconds off the silver medal - but was still kicking himself for not going faster.

Bond clocked an impressive 48min 45.45sec over the 38.5km course.

Australia's Cameron Meyer took gold in 48:13.04 with England's Harry Tanfield claiming silver in 48:43.30.

"Now I look back at all the margins and think, 'What if?'. "But, from now, I just reassess what more I can do and where to next," he said.- AFP, REUTERS