International athletes enjoy a very English celebration

24 July 2012

Olympic and Paralympic athletes from 10 countries took time out from their London 2012 preparations to enjoy at a tea party at the University of Bath.

The University has been playing host to some of the world’s top athletes – including Chinese swimming star Sun Yang and Malaysian badminton player Lee Chong Wei, ranked number one in the men’s singles at London 2012.

Athletes from 10 teams attended a very English tea party at the Sports Training Village, where they were treated to strawberries and cream and nice cup of tea.

The Sports Café was like a veritable United Nations for the party.  In addition to the Malaysian badminton team and representatives of the Chinese swimming team, guests included an Olympic judo player from Nauru and an Olympic swimmer and Paralympic powerlifter from Libya.

International Tea Party. Photo: Sam Farr

The Caribbean was represented by a judo player from Barbados and a swimmer and sprinters from St Vincent and the Grenadines, while members of Denmark’s Paralympic swimming team also joined in the fun.

There was a healthy contingent of athletes who train full-time at the University, including Emmanuel Nartey, who is about to become Ghana’s first Olympic judo player, and Egyptian badminton player Hadia Hosny El Said, who competes at her second Olympics.

Great Britain was well represented in the shape of Team GB’s rhythmic gymnastics group and ParalympicsGB sprinters Katrina Hart, Sophie Kamlish and Ben Rushgrove.

Each of the athletes who has been training at the University of Bath was presented with a pennant supplied by Quilts4London as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

The pennants were presented by Professor Bernie Morley, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Learning and Teaching, as a memento of their stay.

Stephen Baddeley, Director of Sport at the University of Bath, said: “It’s been exciting and inspirational to have so many athletes from so many different countries training at the University of Bath.

“We’re honoured to have had them training with us and on behalf of the University, I’d like to them all the very best of luck for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

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