American-born pole-vaulter Jillian Schwartz will carry the hopes of a nation for more than one reason at the London Olympic Games later this month.
For while Israeli Olympic Committee officials hope Schwartz - who became an Israeli citizen in 2009 - will make it to the podium next month, a top-three finish would also represent a first Israeli female medalist.
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Having represented the US at the 2004 Games, she describes the moment she qualified for London, to represent Israel, as a "very special and very emotional moment."
She said: "Just the thought of marching under the Israeli flag at London is very moving. I have been given a chance to represent the State of Israel and I will do everything it takes to make the most of that."
And despite her American roots, she says: "I'm very deeply connected to Israel. As far as I am concerned, I'm an Israeli through and through."