By Gary Anderson

February 18 - British archer Danielle Brown has been banned from defending her Paralympic title in Rio ©Getty Images Double Paralympic champion Danielle Brown has been left "heartbroken" after World Archery upheld its decision to ban her from going for a hat-trick of titles at Rio 2016.

Following a classification test at the World Championships in November last year, Brown was informed she was no longer eligible for disabled events, ruling her out of future Paralympics and World Championships.

Brown, who suffers from a condition called complex regional pain syndrome, which gives her chronic pain in her feet, won compound gold at Beijing 2008 and London 2012.

Following the decision last November, she launched an appeal to governing body World Archery who granted her a re-test at Lilleshall this month but the result has remained unchanged, leaving the 25-year-old unable to defend her titles.

The change in classification rules by World Archery are to due come into effect from April 1 this year.

"I am obviously very disappointed with the outcome," said Brown, who has also competed in able-bodied archery competitions, including winning gold with England at the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games.

"My disability has stopped me doing so many things in my life and archery has been the one thing that gave me focus and purpose.

"Winning gold at London was one of the best moments in my life and now, 18 months later, its heart breaking to learn that I cannot defend my Paralympic title."

Brown competes while seated on a stool but, according to World Archery, her disability is not severe enough to allow her to compete under its revised classification system.

Back in November the governing body said in a statement: "World Archery, in full agreement with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), clearly states that the Paralympic Games and World Archery Para Championships should not be for anyone who has a physical disability, but for those athletes with a disability where the disability has a direct and important impact on the archery performance."

Brown has been left heartbroken at not being able to have the chance to complete a hat-trick of Paralympic wins at Rio 2016 ©Getty Images Brown has been left heartbroken at not being able to have the chance to complete a hat-trick of Paralympic wins at Rio 2016 ©Getty Images

The three-time world champion has been permitted to continue competing in able-bodied competition, using her stool as an assistive device, but this latest decision means she will lose out on her funding from UK Sport.

"Although I can continue to compete in able-bodied competition I still have to live with my disability and the funding support I have received as a Para-archer will come to an end, making life much more challenging," said Brown.

The Yorkshire native, who plans to appeal directly to the IPC, had been supported in her attempt to overturn the decision by Archery GB and the British Athletes Commission along with solicitors Lewis Silkin.

"We are extremely disappointed that Danielle's classification status remains unchanged following the protest classification," said Archery GB performance director Sara Symington.

"We will continue to support her at this very difficult time and transition funding has been offered.

"We believe Danielle still has an important role to play in archery."

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