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Nina fighting fit for Tokyo

A young judo champion has her sights set on becoming the next MidKent College student to compete at the Olympics.

Nina (in white) in judo action (copyright Rik Vander Sanden)

Nina Solley, 17, from Rainham, is the British champion in her age and weight class and is targeting a spot on Team GB for the 2020 games in Tokyo, Japan.

If she achieves her goal, she will follow in the footsteps of Jack Green and Kat Driscoll (both London 2012) and Charlotte Evans (Sochi 2014) who also progressed to Olympic or Paralympic success after studying at MidKent College.

“That’s my aim and it would mean everything to me if I get there,” said Nina.

“When I was little I remember watching Kelly Holmes win two gold medals in Athens, and she’s been my role model ever since. She just looked so happy and I want to experience the same feelings she had that day.”

Nina is currently studying on the level 3 Sport course at MidKent College’s Medway Campus but is occasionally granted time off to fight in judo grading competitions across Europe.

So far this year she has won gold medals in Scotland and Belgium while also training with members of the senior Team GB squad who are hoping to compete at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

“It’s really good fun and I enjoy the experience of meeting lots of people and exploring different cultures,” said Nina.

“I’ve been taking part in competitions since I was 10 but it’s still always really exciting. I never thought I’d get to the stage where I was aiming for the Olympics. I was rubbish when I was little!”

MidKent College offers a number of full-time, part-time and higher education courses in sport, fitness and leisure.

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