xEleanor1WEB_4214THE lights were burning brightly right across Leongatha, early on Saturday morning as Eleanor Patterson took her high jumping talents to the world.

Fingers were crossed and hearts were pounding as the oposition fell away and Eleanor lined up for the clutch jump of the competition, her first attempt at 1.94 metres.

Having sailed over it with room to spare, under immense pressure and great expectation, Eleanor moved into the gold medal position and neither of the remaining competitors could either match her effort or raise the bar to 1.96m to go ahead of our golden girl.

Eleanor took up the challenge of jumping 1.96m and went oh so close but the 1.94 first-time clearance was enough and she became only the third Australian-ever to win a Commonwealth Games Gold Medal at 18 years of age.

The pride rising from the township of Leongatha was audible as she stood on the top step of the dias later, received her gold medal and smiled, in front of a packed Glasgow stadium, to the strains of the Australian National Anthem, as they hailed a new star in the athletics world.

Leongatha’s number one citizen, South Gippsland Shire Mayor Cr Jim Fawcett, was delighted.

“The people I have spoken to in Leongatha this morning were overjoyed. We’re very, very proud of her,” he said.

“I’ve only met her on a couple of occasions but each time I have I have been impressed with her poise and her mature attitude.

“She’s a great ambassadour for Australia, for our shire and for Leongatha.

“We should also acknowledge the efforts of her coach, David Green, and her family. A great achievement all round and no doubt they’ve had a wonderful experience over there and we look forward to seeing them when they get home.”

And so say all of us!!