Anna is a double Olympic medallist who represented Great Britain in the Double Sculls. She won bronze in Beijing in 2008 before taking home both gold and an Olympic record from the London 2012 Games. She won World Championship titles in 2010 and 2011 in addition to setting an indoor rowing world record.
During her childhood in Leek, Staffordshire, Anna was more likely to be found at a maths competition than participating in sport. However, on her arrival at Newnham College, Cambridge, to study Natural Sciences, she began rowing and was later invited to join a national talent identification programme.
She made her international debut at the 2004 Under 23 World Championships, winning a gold in the Coxless Four. She joined the senior squad and decided to combine training with a PhD in Mathematics at Reading, where she received a sports scholarship.
Anna competed with Reading University Boat Club in many events, joining mixed ability crews and winning the top university prize at the 2011 Women’s Eights Head of the River race on the Thames.
Whilst a student, she represented Britain in the Double Sculls at two Olympics, winning a bronze medal in Beijing in 2008. At the London 2012 Games, she and partner Katherine Grainger set an Olympic record time in the semi-finals before taking the gold in front of an ecstatic crowd.
In addition to her Olympic medals, Anna can also count two World titles, a rowing machine record and an MBE for services to rowing, which she was appointed in the 2013 New Year’s Honours.
She is now retired from professional rowing. In addition to consulting on data analytics for sports teams, Anna is a mother of two boys and a patron of the Women’s Sport Trust, which promotes women’s sport and welfare.
“Reading had a can-do attitude, which enabled me to sustain both sport and academia. This meant my sporting career could last longer and academically I achieved things I never thought possible.”