A host of sportspeople training at the University of Bath are set to represent their countries on the greatest stage when the Japanese capital city of Tokyo hosts the rescheduled Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2021.
The Games of the XXXII Olympiad, which have been delayed from 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will now take place from July 23 to August 8, 2021 and feature a record 33 sports.
There are around 50 sportspeople who currently train or have trained at the University who are in contention for a Tokyo Olympic place. We caught up with four of them – Freya Anderson (swimming), Megan Fletcher (judo), Kate French (modern pentathlon) and Vicky Holland (triathlon) – with 100 days to go in April 2021, click on the names to read their stories.
The Paralympic Games, which will now take place from August 24 to September 5 2021, will feature 22 sports. Among those hoping to take part are University-based wheelchair fencers Dimitri Coutya and Piers Gilliver, who are both reigning World Champions – here is a look behind the scenes into their successful training group.
Vicky Holland, of the British Triathlon Bath National Performance Centre, was the first University of Bath-based sportsperson to be officially selected for Tokyo when she was named in the Team GB Olympic squad in November 2020. Vicky, the Rio 2016 bronze-medallist and 2018 World Champion, is coached by Rhys Davey at the Sports Training Village. Read the full story by clicking here.
Nine University of Bath-based swimmers were selected by Team GB for the Olympic Games in April. Freya Anderson, Jacob Peters, Kieran Bird, James Guy, Brodie Williams, Matt Richards, Tom Dean and Calum Jarvis all train with the British Swimming National Centre Bath squad, coached by David McNulty and Jol Finck, while former World Champion Ben Proud is coached by University of Bath Head of Swimming Mark Skimming. Read the full story by clicking here.
University of Bath alumni will also be well represented in Tokyo. Anna Hopkin (Sport & Exercise Science) joins Sports Performance graduate Calum Jarvis in the Team GB swimming squad, while Sara Parfett (Biology) will make her Olympic debut as part of a rowing squad that also includes Helen Glover and Vicky Thornley – all three began their careers with the British Rowing World Class Start talent development programme based at Team Bath. Read the full story by clicking here.
Graduates Deborah Fleming (Sport & Social Sciences) and Natasha Hunt (Coach Education & Sports Development) will represent Team GB in the women’s rugby sevens – read the full story by clicking here – and Stuart Wood, who studied Maths and Physics at the University, has been selected in the ParalympicsGB paracanoeing squad.
Pentathlon GB‘s Joe Choong was the first University-based athlete to set the Tokyo qualification standard when he won men’s individual gold in the Olympic host city at the 2019 World Cup Final, a test event for the Games. Read the full story by clicking here.
To Tokyo via Bath
The University of Bath hosted a qualifying event for the Tokyo Olympic Games when the 2019 Modern Pentathlon European Championships were staged at the Sports Training Village – home of Pentathlon GB‘s National Training Centre – from August 6-11, 2019.
There were 16 qualifying places up for grabs – eight in the men’s competition, eight in the women’s – and the event took place exactly a year before the Olympic modern pentathlon competition is staged. Among those earning qualification spots for Team GB were Jamie Cooke, who won men’s gold in superb style, and Kate French, who was a silver-medallist in the women’s competition. Click here to read more.
Countdown to the Games
Stay up to date with all the build-up, news and selections on our Olympic and Paralympic news channel – click here.