6:40pm Friday 30th May 2014
By Bill Marshall
Rebekah Tiler may be the youngest competitor in England’s weightlifting and powerlifting squad for the Commonwealth Games squad in Glasgow.
But that doesn’t mean that the 15-year-old is merely making up the numbers for Glasgow 2014.
According to British Weight Lifting, the Bingley Grammar School pupil “is one of England’s strongest medal contenders”.
The teenager is in the women’s 69kg class, and goes to Scotland on the back of getting silver at the European Youth Champion-ships in April before being crowned as Britain’s young-est winner of a British senior title earlier this month in Coventry.
British Weight Lifting, the national governing body for weightlifting and powerlifting, yesterday confirmed the athletes who have been selected to go to Glasgow 2014.
A total of 16 athletes – nine male and seven female – have been chosen across both disciplines, with 14 competing in weighlifting and the others taking part in the para-sport powerlifting competitions.
Representing England in the women’s competition will be 2014 British senior champion and London 2012 competitor Zoe Smith.
Smith, who won a bronze at the 2010 Games in Delhi, will be England’s only representative in the women’s 58kg class, as both Emily Godley and Sarah Davies go head-to-head in the 63kg category. Mercy Brown will compete in the women’s 75kg class.
She qualified for Glasgow in March at the British Student Championships, breaking eight British records across a variety of age groups.
The England men’s team includes current British senior champions Jack Oliver (77kg), from Leeds, and Owen Boxall.
Boxall will compete against team-mate and 2014 British Senior Champion-ships silver medallist Sonny Webster in the 94kg weight category.
Natalie Blake is the only female to be selected for the para-sport powerlifting competition, while current world champion and world record holder Ali Jawad, from Leeds, will be aiming for a medal in the lightweight men’s category.
Ashley Metcalfe, British Weight Lifting’s chief executive officer, said: “This has by far been one of our toughest team selections.
"We are entering into this summer’s Commonwealth Games off the back of a year of fantastic record-breaking performances for many of England’s athletes, which has made our job very difficult.
“We have some serious medal contenders for England and we are confident of some winning performances this summer.
"Next up is our team training camp in Loughborough on June 6-7, when the excitement and attention towards Glasgow 2014 really does start, and we are looking forward to an intensive next few weeks of preparation.”
The Commonwealth Games, which takes place from July 23 to August 3, is set to be the biggest multi-sport event ever in Scotland, and will bring together athletes from 70 nations, competing in 17 sports at 14 venues across the city.
The weightlifting and para-sport powerlifting competitions are scheduled from July 24-August 2.
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