Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill – who won heptathlon gold for Great Britain at the London 2012 Olympic Games – has welcomed a baby girl with her husband of four years, Andy Hill.
And she has chosen a fashionable (and meaningful) name for her daughter.
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Taking to Instagram, Ennis-Hill shared a black-and-white photograph of her two-year-old son meeting his new sibling for the first time.
A post shared by Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill (@jessicaennishill) on
“Reggie meeting his beautiful baby sister, Olivia Ennis-Hill,” wrote the athlete.
“She was born Saturday night. We are all so in love with her.”
It’s an undeniably trendy name choice: earlier this month, the Office of National Statistics (ONS) in England and Wales released its lists of the previous year’s most popular baby names. And, you guessed it, sitting pretty at the top of the list was the name ‘Olivia’.
It’s not just a popular name choice: Olivia is also imbued with great meaning, too.
First popularised by Shakespeare with his play Twelfth Night, the Bard’s Olivia is a beautiful, wealthy but grief-stricken countess who falls in love with a woman disguised as a man.
In ancient Greece, meanwhile, the olive was a symbol of Athena, the goddess of wisdom, craft and war, and a token of peace and fertility: it should come as no surprise to learn, then, that the name ‘Olivia’ means ‘olive tree’ in Latin.
Ennis-Hill announced her retirement from athletics shortly after winning silver at the Rio games in 2016.
Dubbing it “one of the toughest decisions” she’s ever made, the Olympian explained that she wanted to leave her sports career “on a high”.
Sharing a collage of photos from throughout her successful career on Instagram, she explained: “Amazing memories…from my first world title in Berlin 2009 to Rio 2016 I'm so fortunate to have had such an amazing career within the sport I love and this has been one of the toughest decisions I've had to make.
“But I know that retiring now is right. I've always said I want to leave my sport on a high and have no regrets and I can truly say that. I want to thank my family and incredible team who have spent so much of their time supporting me and enabling me to achieve my dreams.”
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Neil Black, performance director at British Athletics, supported Ennis-Hill’s decision, saying: “Her record as an athlete is phenomenal and that's without considering the challenges of returning from pregnancy to win world gold and Olympic silver.
“I’d like to thank her not only for her contribution to the GB team over the years, but additionally for being a great person to work with, know and support.”
Images: Rex Features