A ONE-OFF competition will decide whether Micky Yule has the chance to compete at his second Paralympic Games.

The 42-year-old will be joined by powerlifters from across the globe in Dubai at the end of June, with the best going on to secure a place at the Paralympic Games in Japan in August.

The former Wallyford man described the upcoming event as “a one-off throw down”.

He has endured a disrupted training regime, including being unable to head to his usual base at Loughborough University.

Instead, much of his training has been restricted to his garage and braving temperatures of -3C.

He said: “Powerlifting was one of the only sports that reopened its qualification.

“A lot of sports took the qualification and ran with it but everybody in powerlifting has to requalify now.

“Just with home schooling, it is only two weeks ago that the Government put the kids back to school.

“I had two weeks of training prior to Loughborough, which is crazy really.

“Now, I’m going to be able to have a good spell building up to Dubai at the end of June.

“It is the final qualifier and there will be massive pressure on that to requalify to get to Tokyo.

“From Dubai to Tokyo is only nine weeks training.

“Everything is coming in close.”

County powerlifter Micky Yule at the Rio Olympics. Pic Andrew Matthews/PA Wire.

County powerlifter Micky Yule at the Rio Olympics. Pic Andrew Matthews/PA Wire.

Yule took silver in the 80 kilogrammes category on day three of the World Para Powerlifting World Cup in Manchester last month.

The former soldier lifted 180 kilogrammes at the Wythenshawe Forum to secure second place on the podium, behind Ahmad Razm Azar of Georgia, at the crucial qualifying event for this summer’s rescheduled Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

Now living in Southampton, Yule, who competed in the Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, said: “To have the opportunity to lift back here in Manchester has been amazing.

“I missed that last lift, but I am pretty happy with that performance.

“It sets me up well for pushing forward to Dubai, which is the final qualifier to go to Tokyo, and that’s where all my energy and all my focus will be.

“I’m trying my hardest.

“It’s a crazy level at this top, top, elite lifting.

“The weights are there to hit.

“I just need to hit them and I will do going forward.

“Attack into Dubai and I will get that plane ticket to Tokyo.”

Micky Yule finished sixth in Rio. Pic Andrew Matthews/PA Wire.

Micky Yule finished sixth in Rio. Pic Andrew Matthews/PA Wire.

Yule was competing in his first event for 14 months at the Manchester contest, with coronavirus restrictions putting competitions on the backburner.

He told Courier Sport it had been a different competition to what was usually on offer.

Yule, who lost both legs when he stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED) while on army duty in Afghanistan in 2010, praised the organisers and said: “I don’t think anybody knew how it was going to go really.

“It was good to see where everybody else in Europe and the world was.

“It was definitely different and we had to be in an athlete’s bubble, isolate in the hotel for five days and competing in the place, which was empty – it was just the lifters and the refs.”