James Ellis, 6 staff and the 20-strong squad of footballers join the rest of Team GB on a flight to the Far East tomorrow (Tuesday) for three weeks to include final preparation and a gruelling competition schedule in the Chinese city of Shenzhen.
The World University Games, which are held every two years, is the third largest multi-sport Games in the world, behind the Olympics and the Asian Games. More than 12000 athletes will be attending the Games in China to compete in 24 different sports, including football, athletics, basketball, diving, fencing, gymnastics, judo, swimming, table tennis, volleyball and water polo.
Mr Ellis, who was assistant coach two years ago in Serbia, leads his charges in matches against Canada, Ghana and Japan in the group stages of the football competition. The top two teams will go on to be ranked first to eighth while the bottom two teams will battle for places nine to 16.
Two years ago in Serbia Team GB just missed out of a medal, losing the bronze medal match, but will face a much more daunting task this time around as no GB team has come higher than seventh when the games have been held in the Far East.
Mr Ellis said: “The calibre of competition at the World University Games is extremely high, our players will not be used to the environmental conditions, but with final preparation before the first game on the 11th August will help us be fit and ready for that first game.”
“First we have to make sure that we finish in the top two in a very tough group but we would love to return to Britain with a medal.
British Universities and Colleges Sport and Team GB are taking some 300 athletes and staff, across 16 sports to the China for the Games, which includes the water polo team who will be competing at the London Olympics next year.
Notes to Editors
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James is available for interviews on 07870 196403
For more information contact Luke Hamer, Assistant Press Officer, University of Warwick on 02476 575601, or 07824 541142, or alternatively email firstname.lastname@example.org.