JADE O’Dowda is still letting her impressive English Schools’ triumph sink in, writes JACK JOHNSON.

The Oxford City AC starlet clinched the Under 20 girls’ heptathlon in Boston, Lincolnshire, dominating the field with five personal bests.

O’Dowda, 18, still has a year remaining in the age category.

And her triumph was all the more remarkable, given that she spent ten weeks at the beginning of the season struggling with a lower back injury.

Although humble in victory, the Gosford Hill School, Kidlington, pupil, was elated to win the title with a personal best score of 5,442 points.

The haul saw her move up to 14th in the all-time national Under 20 rankings.

O’Dowda said: “It’s really good, I’m still a year young.

“I would not be able to do any of this if it was not for (coaches) Marcia and Ian Marriott.

“We all have fun when we’re doing it and that just makes everything a bit more enjoyable.”

The teenager’s injury saw her miss the Under 20/Senior Combined Events Championships in May, but she has since excelled in three heptathlons.

She won the Midland Schools’ title, finished in the top six at the Woerden Open meeting in Holland, before producing some of her best form in Boston last week.

O’Dowda said: “I injured my SI joint, it was heavily compressed, and I was not able to move it properly.

“It wasn’t great, but all the hard work was worth it seeing the result I achieved.

“It would hurt to walk up the stairs, to sit down, that was when it was really bad.

“But with Marcia and my physio, they were going to make sure I would compete no matter what.

“I never thought about writing the season off.”

Marcia Marriott was full of praise for O’Dowda’s positive mentality.

The coach said: “We never stopped working, she is brilliant.

“She never got depressed, we visited her physio three times a week and we got through it.

“She stayed motivated and is a true champion, she never let it upset her, never missed a training session and is so dedicated, full credit to her.”