Team UK Heads Down Under for Invictus Games Sydney 2018
A 72-strong team of wounded, injured and sick current and former military personnel has departed from London Heathrow for Sydney, Australia to represent the UK in the fourth Invictus Games.
Competitors from 18 nations will compete in 11 medal sports with events being staged across Greater Sydney, including at Sydney Olympic Park and on and around Sydney Harbour. The event will begin with an opening ceremony on 20 October at the Sydney Opera House.
Defence Secretary, Gavin Williamson said:
“I wish all of our UK competitors the best of luck in Australia. The word ‘Invictus’ means unconquered and perfectly embodies the fighting spirit of our Armed Forces and ex-service personnel. Meeting many Invictus competitors this year I learnt how sport is spurring on recovery. Our Armed Forces have a world-class attitude and I am sure they will make their mark.”
Jayne Kavanagh, of Help for Heroes and the Team UK Chef de Mission, said:
“Team UK have been working extremely hard for this moment and are ready to do the nation proud in Sydney. Achieving their goals with the British public behind them provides an incredible springboard for the recovery journeys that will continue long after the Games have ended. We are very grateful to our partners and sponsors who have helped make this opportunity possible.”
Captain of the UK Invictus team, Mark ‘Dot’ Perkins said:
“Today is the culmination of months of careful preparation by all 72 competitors and the many staff, friends and family who have supported us. The next two weeks will demonstrate the unique power of sport to support recovery. Team UK are ready, raring to go and enjoying the camaraderie which the Armed Forces is famous for.”
The Invictus Games is an international multi-sport event for wounded, injured and sick military personnel and veterans. Getting involved in sport provides significant physical and mental health benefits including increasing self-confidence.
Of this year’s UK team, over 60% are new to the Invictus Games. More hopefuls than ever before – 451 wounded, injured and sick current and former military personnel – trialled for one of the 72 places available on the UK team. The rigorous selection process was based on the benefit the Invictus Games will give an individual as part of their recovery, combined with their performance and commitment to training.
The competitors will be joined in Sydney by hundreds of family members and friends who will make the journey to show their support.
Team UK has been delivered through a partnership of the Ministry of Defence, The Royal British Legion and Help for Heroes. The Invictus Games Sydney 2018 will take place from 20–27 October.
Image: A 72-strong team of wounded, injured and sick current and former military personnel has departed from London Heathrow for Sydney, Australia to represent the UK in the fourth Invictus Games.