A further 30 athletes across three sports – Boxing (9), Para-Sport Lawn Bowls (7) and Wrestling (14) – have been selected to represent Team Scotland at Glasgow 2014.
Following an intensive year-long selection period, Commonwealth Games Scotland (CGS) in conjunction with Boxing Scotland, Scottish Disability Sport and the Scottish Wrestling Association today confirmed the names of the athletes who will compete in the XX Commonwealth Games this summer.
Both Boxing and Lawn Bowls have had major qualification events in Glasgow, with the recent Boxing Scotland Senior Championships confirming final spots on the team for the Games. The five Para-Sport bowlers and two Directors bring the total number of Lawn Bowls athletes to 17, which represents the largest Scottish team ever. A mix of youth and experience makes up the Wrestling team, who will be looking for their first medal since 1994.
Making the announcement Team Scotland Chef de Mission, Jon Doig said: “Huge congratulations to all of the athletes who have been selected for Team Scotland. There has been a competitive selection process across the three sports, which has demonstrated the wealth of talent we have in Scotland. Every athlete with a place on the team has clearly demonstrated their ability to meet the selection standards set and has earned the right to compete for Team Scotland.
“Today’s announcement brings us well past the 100 mark in terms of selected athletes for the Games, and we are on track to achieve our goal of having our largest ever team in Glasgow. Alongside that, it is clear that we have the quality within the team to help us achieve our main goal of having our most successful ever Games.”
Of the 30, only ten athletes have represented Scotland at a previous Commonwealth Games, with a further four athletes making the step up from the Commonwealth Youth Games. Boxer Josh Taylor and the Robertson twins are the only Commonwealth Games medallists in the group, but with many capable of emulating their achievement.
Scottish boxers have been consistently successful at the Commonwealth Games, taking home a medal from every competition since its inception as the British Empire Games in 1930. Delhi silver medallist Josh Taylor is looking to build on his experience at the London 2012 Olympics, and is joined in the team by fellow Delhi fighters Joe Ham and Ross Henderson.
Charlie Flynn and Kieran Smith are making the step up from the 2011 Commonwealth Youth Games in the Isle of Man, while Aqeel Ahmed, Reece McFadden, Scott Forrest and Stephen Lavelle make their Team Scotland debuts. The tenth and final place in the boxing team in the 69kg weight category is still to be decided and will be announced in due course.
Boxing Scotland Chairman Richard Thomas said: “For Glasgow 2014, the nomination of our boxers in a number of weights has come down to the wire. We have witnessed determination and courage from all the boxers in the world’s toughest tournaments throughout the selection period. Now the nominations have been confirmed, our focus now turns to ensuring that our boxers deliver to very best of their ability in 92 days-time when the Games begin.”
Glasgow 2014 will see Scotland’s Para-Sport Lawn Bowlers compete in the Games for the first time since the 2002 Games in Manchester, where they won Gold.
The B6/B7/B8 Triples team of Billy Allan, Michael Simpson and Kevin Wallace have already tasted success on the greens at the Kelvingrove Lawn Bowls Centre, where they won the 2013 Eight Nations Commonwealth Invitational Championships. Kevin and Michael have also had success at the last Bowls for Disabled World Championships in 2011 where Kevin won Gold in the Singles and a Bronze in the Pairs with Michael.
B2/B3 Mixed Pair Robert Conway and Irene Edgar were also successful at the Eight Nations, beating England in the Bronze medal match. They too have great international pedigree, with Robert winning Gold at the 2013 International Blind Bowls Association World Championships and together they won Bronze in the Pairs event. Robert and Irene, who have a visual impairment, will be supported by two Directors Ron McArthur and David Thomas, who for the first time are classed as athletes and will be eligible to receive any medals won.
Bob Dick, Head Coach said: “All of our bowlers have worked very hard to be selected and are extremely worthy of the honour. We certainly have the capability of winning medals in both events, however we cannot be complacent, because there will be serious opposition from the world number one disabled bowling nation, South Africa, as well as Australia, who will be serious medal contenders. They are hungry for success, and with intensive training between now and the Games I am optimistic about the team’s chances.”
Half of the wrestlers selected will be making their debut at the Commonwealth Games, with Gareth Jones making the step up from the 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games, where he represented Team Scotland in Pune. Brian Harper, Ross McFarlane, Alex Gladkov, Lewis Waddell, Shannon Hawke and Chelsea Murphy complete the list of debutants.
Twins Fiona and Donna Robertson are amongst the seven athletes who have featured at previous Games and they will be hoping that the roar of the home crowd will enable them to improve on the string of fourth places from Delhi. This will be the second Games in a row that the 48kg sisters have wrestled for Team Scotland having made the switch from Judo before the 2010 Games in Delhi. Both have tasted Commonwealth Games medal success with Donna taking Bronze at the 1990 Auckland Games and Fiona replicating her achievement in 2002 in Manchester.
Jayne Clason, Kathryn Marsh, Sarah Jones, Viorel Etko and Joseph Luigi Bianco complete the group who have competed for Team Scotland before.
Victor Keelan, President of the Scottish Wrestling Association, said: “The Scottish Wrestling Association is extremely proud of our athletes selected to compete for Team Scotland in the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Through their hard work and the leadership of our national coach Volodymyr Gladkov, we feel we have a strong team to lead us to success in Glasgow and create a legacy for our future wrestlers.”
Minister for Commonwealth Games and Sport, Shona Robison, said: “First of all I’d like to congratulate each and every one of our athletes on being selected to join Team Scotland. It is a brilliant achievement to represent your country and all those who have made the Boxing, Wrestling and Para-Sport Lawn Bowls teams should feel very proud of themselves. Their selection to Team Scotland is a reflection of the hard work and commitment they have put in over the past year.
“I am also delighted for the coaches and support staff who have played a pivotal role in supporting their athletes up to this point. Many of them benefited from the sportscotland Coach Personal Awards (SCPA’s) scheme announced last year, which covers their expenses while they are supporting their athletes’ training and competition schedules, essentially allowing them to dedicate even more time to their teams.
“This is a very exciting time for Team Scotland. We are on course to deliver a spectacular Games this summer and I hope there will be a lot of celebrating still to come during, and after, the Games.”
Many of the athletes announced today have benefited from the support of sportscotland the national agency for sport and in particular from the high performance support and expertise provided by the sportscotland institute of sport.
Also congratulating the athletes, Louise Martin CBE, Chair of sportscotland, said: “I am delighted that Team Scotland now has over 100 athletes confirmed for Glasgow, well on track for having a record number of Scots competing in a Commonwealth Games.
“With a mixture of experienced and first-time Games competitors, Team Scotland is shaping up to provide Scotland’s best ever Commonwealth Games performance at what promises to be the best ever Games. The high performance support services provided by sportscotland is world class and we are preparing some of the best athletes in the world – we have much to be proud of and much to look forward to.”
Today’s announcement brings the total Team Scotland numbers selected so far to 122 with an anticipated final team size in the region of 270 athletes.
Aqeel Ahmed 49kg
Reece McFadden 52kg
Joe Ham 56kg
Charlie Flynn 60kg
Josh Taylor 64kg
Kieran Smith 75kg
Scott Forrest 81kg
Stephen Lavelle 91kg
Ross Henderson 91+kg
PARA-SPORT LAWN BOWLERS (7)
Billy Allan B6/B7/B8 Open Triples
Kevin Wallace B6/B7/B8 Open Triples
Michael Simpson B6/B7/B8 Open Triples
Robert Conway B2/B3 Mixed Pairs
Irene Edgar B2/B3 Mixed Pairs
Ron McArthur B2/B3 Mixed Pairs Director
David Thomas B2/B3 Mixed Pairs Director
Brian Harper 57kg
Ross McFarlane 57kg
Viorel Etko 61kg
Gareth Jones 65kg
Alex Gladkov 65kg
Joseph Luigi Bianco 86kg
Lewis Waddell 86kg
Fiona Robertson 48kg
Donna Robertson 48kg
Shannon Hawke 53kg
Jayne Clason 53kg
Chelsea Murphy 55kg
Kathryn Marsh 55kg
Sarah Jones 69kg