His Royal Highness Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle met Invictus Games hopefuls today at the University of Bath Sports Training Village, ahead of the fourth Invictus Games being held down under in Sydney, Australia this October.
The Invictus Games, which have previously been held in London, Orlando and Toronto, set out to harness the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for our wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women.
Defence Minister, Tobias Ellwood, also met 2018 hopefuls today to see how they are using sport as part of their recovery journey.
Across the weekend, 5 - 8 April, hopefuls who have suffered a life-changing injury or illness will trial in nine different sports including Athletics, Archery, Wheelchair Basketball, Road Cycling, Powerlifting, Indoor Rowing, Wheelchair Rugby, Swimming and Sitting Volleyball. Last week (28-29 March), hopefuls also trialled in a new sport for the 2018 games; Sailing.
More hopefuls than ever before (451) have applied to take part in the 2018 Invictus Games and all hope to be selected as part of the 72-strong UK team that will head to Sydney. The UK team will be selected based on the benefit the Invictus Games will give an individual as part of their recovery, combined with performance and commitment to training.
The UK delegation to the 2018 Invictus Games is once again being delivered by a partnership comprising the Ministry of Defence, Help for Heroes and The Royal British Legion.
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said:
I wish all our serving troops and veterans taking part in this year’s trials the best of luck. The Invictus Games demonstrate the positive impact of sport in the recovery process, and provide inspiration and opportunity to those that have suffered life changing injuries and illnesses whilst serving their country and keeping Britain safe.
The MOD is a partner in the Defence Recovery Capability, a programme which helps wounded, injured and sick Service personnel either return to duty from injury or provides a mechanism to help them back into civilian life - link. A key activity of the Defence Recovery Capability is the Battle Back programme, an MOD initiative that delivers an adaptive sport and adventurous training programme.
The Invictus Games Sydney 2018 will take place from 20 - 27 October.