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Lauren Williams came agonisingly close to claiming Olympic taekwondo gold for Great Britain at the Makuhari Hall in Tokyo before a late burst by her opponent Matea Jelic won the title for Croatia.

The Blackwood 22-year-old had risen from the ashes of an injury-ravaged year to blaze into the women's -67kg final and fleetingly looked to have the biggest prize in her sport at her mercy.

But watched by Jade Jones, whose win at the 2012 Olympics inspired Williams to give up a successful junior career in kick-boxing and emulate her hero, Williams lost a three-point advantage with 10 seconds remaining to lose 25-22.

Williams was beaten in the final
(Image: Getty Images)

It was a heartbreaking end to a spectacular day for Williams who had carved a one-point advantage at the end of round one and who turned the tie back in her favour in the final round with two consecutive two-point trunk kicks heading into the last half-minute.

However Jelic, the world number one who also claimed the European crown with victory over Williams in the final in April, hauled left with a three-point head-kick with nine seconds remaining, and followed up with a body shot which effectively secured her win.

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"It's not enough, I had her, 10 seconds, I just let it go… I made a mistake and let it go, it's on me," Williams told the BBC.

"I went out there to win and tried my best but it didn't happen on the day. I am very happy with how I performed but it's a shame she got it. An Olympic silver medal is not bad, is it?"