“I’m not used to people being there to cheer me on but this is what Invictus is all about. All the nations are cheering every single one of us on!” Paul Guest, Team UK competitor
Today’s action at the Invictus Games in Sydney saw Paul Guest join forces with a Dutch competitor in the Wheelchair Tennis match. It was a true demonstration of the spirit of the Games and camaraderie between nations.
A total of 30 wounded, injured and sick Veterans and Service Personnel competed in Sydney today as part of their ongoing recovery journeys.
In the rowing, our competitors achieved a phenomenal 33 Personal Bests and won 5 Gold and 5 Silver medals.
Two of those were won by Rachel Williamson, a former RAF servicewoman from the East Midlands. In her teens Rachel was an athlete, narrowly missing out on being selected for the Commonwealth Games. But since suffering a life-changing injury she stopped doing anything sport related. But with the support of Help for Heroes she slowly rediscovered her love of sport to compete at the Invictus Games.
She said “I didn’t believe at first. Just disbelief, also chuffed I got a PB. This has been the culmination of a year of training. Before then I would walk past the rower in the gym. Invictus is truly inspiring. An unforgettable experience.”
Team Captain Mark ‘Dot’ Perkins also competed at the rowing, winning two silver medals to add to his bronze medal he won at the Jaguar Land Rover driving challenge on Saturday.
He said, “To now get three medals is more than I could ever have hoped for. More importantly the team are smashing it out the park, winning medals and getting PBs in every sport. Fantastic Invictus so far.”
Former Lance Corporal Martin Tye (35) from Hampshire also clinched gold in the indoor rowing and former Guardsman David Watson picked up two silvers, he said “Sydney 2018 is a chance to prove that there is no limit, and that being an amputee is not the end of my sporting journey.”
The sitting volleyball team showed incredible fighting spirit as they triumphed in two matches today to progress to tomorrow’s semi-final.
Today was also the first day with all sports on the Olympic Park, which meant that there were hundreds of friends & family supporting competitors from every nation. The atmosphere was amazing.
Team UK is delivered through a partnership of Help for Heroes, the MOD and The Royal British Legion.