University bids farewell to British Judo athletes

Rio-bound British Judo athletes who train at the sport’s Centre of Excellence at the University of Wolverhampton’s Walsall Campus have been given a resounding send-off ahead of the Olympics.

The Going for Gold event was held in honour of the 13 athletes who will compete in the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Brazil during August and September.

Held at the University of Wolverhampton’s Chancellor’s Hall at its City Wulfruna Campus, it catered for the athletes, their families, coaches and staff from British Judo.

The athletes train at state-of-the-art facilities at the British Judo Centre of Excellence at the University’s Walsall Campus, and Paralympian Jack Hodgson combines this with studying a BSC in Sports Coaching Practice with the University.

Guests were treated to a Rio-themed event, which included traditional Brazilian music and dancing, and given send offs from representatives of the University and President of the British Judo Association George Kerr 10th Dan CBE.

University of Wolverhampton’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor Ian Oakes, who hosted the event, said: “It was a great way to wish our friends and partners at British Judo the best of luck at the forthcoming Olympics and Paralympic games.

“The Centre of Excellence at our Walsall Campus is an excellent facility and demonstrates our ambition and commitment to create an environment in which elite athletes can flourish and compete at the highest level.

“We hope we have been able to help give them a platform for success in Rio and the University wishes each and every one of them the best of luck.”

Nigel Donohue, British Judo Performance Director said: “It was a terrific evening and a great send off for the players. This was the first time in a long time that our athletes have been given a going away event like this and we have to give a big thank you to the University for putting the event on.

“Our partnership with the University has been really beneficial for our World-Class Performance Programme and has helped the preparation of all of our Rio-bound athletes.”

Athletes competing at the Rio games are:

Olympic Team:

Nekoda Davis -57kg

Alice Schlesinger -63kg

Sally Conway -70kg

Natalie Powell -78kg

Ashley Mckenzie -60kg

Colin Oates -66kg

Ben Fletcher -100kg

Paralympic Team:

Jonathan Drane -81kg

Sam Ingram -90kg

Chris Skelley -100kg

Jack Hodgson -100kg

ENDS

Picture: The athletes with representatives from the University and British Judo.

For more information please contact James Allen in the University Media Relations Office on 01902 322003 or Abdullah Mahmood from British Judo on 07989 591713.

Date Issued: Friday 22 July 2016

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