Bristol’s future Olympians win gold
Press release issued: 20 January 2009
Two Olympians of the future have won gold medals in the 2009 Australian Youth Olympic Festival (AYOF), a bi-annual event for Olympic aspirants between the ages of 13 and 19, held in Perth, Australia.
Around 1,600 athletes from 25 countries competed in 15 Olympic sports at the event, which plays a significant part in developing future Olympians.
Bristol University undergraduate students Georgie Twigg and Philippa Newton, were part of the Great Britain Women’s Hockey Team that won their second gold medal, competing against hosts Australia, in the event’s final.
A late goal gave the GB team a lifeline, with a last-minute equaliser to force the game into extra time after the teams had traded goals two minutes earlier, followed by the winning goal, condemning their opposition, the Australian Women’s Hockey Team, to the silver medal.
Both students are members of the University’s High Performance Squad, which aims to help and support talented student athletes continue with their sporting careers without compromising their academic progress.
Charlie Seccombe, the University’s Director of Hockey, said: “The University support system has been extremely beneficial to these highly talented athletes – first by way of the Vice-Chancellor’s Scholarship Awards programme and the high level of sports medicine, sports sciences and coaching support they have received.“
Claire Callaghan, Clinic Manager at the University’s Sports Medicine Clinic, said: “In the lead up to the tournament both girls received support from staff at the University. Phillipa endured more than a month’s rehabilitation under the University’s Sports Medicine Clinic after an ankle injury looked likely to prevent her from playing.
“Our clinicians were very pleased to have been able to help both Phillipa and Georgie with their rehabilitation in the lead up to the tournament, and although I am Australian, I am extremely pleased they are bringing back gold medals!”
Both students, who are members of the Hockey West National Performance Centre, Clifton Ladies Hockey Club and the University of Bristol Ladies Hockey Club, are due back in England shortly and hope to continue to impress at University level where currently Bristol is top of the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) Premier League South.