The Commonwealth Games are well under way on the Gold Coast and with only 3 days left until the closing ceremony we are shining the spotlight on our serving personnel who are competing in a range of events.
Corporal Stuart Hill of the Royal Irish, Royal Artillery Sergeant Sam Gowin & Royal Engineer Sapper Michael Bamsey, are all shooting for Northern Ireland, England & Wales respectively.
Spr Bamsey, who became the most decorated shooter at the Australian Youth Olympics in Sydney 2013 when he won 3 silver medals for Team GB, said “To be selected to represent Wales is a great honour. It doesn’t happen very often in sports as we are representing Great Britain on a regular basis.
“The opportunity to don the Welsh colours and compete for the opportunity at a medal for Wales is a call up that can only be considered with the highest levels of respect and pride.”
With the Army’s support behind him, Spr Bamsey, who is based with the British Army Marksmanship Unit in Pirbirght, said “My ability to train and compete at the international level would not be possible without the support of the Royal Engineers and the Army Sports Control Board.”
To get the news of being selected I was so speechless Private Fern Davies
He has one more event left at the Gold Coast Games; the 50 Metre Three Positions on 14th April.
This morning, Sgt Sam Gowin from Portsmouth has competed in the 25 Metre Rapid Fire Pistol Qualification Stage 1 where he finished 2nd. Before he left the UK he said: “I am absolutely over the moon to announce that I’ve been selected to represent Team England at the 2018 Commonwealth Games!”
Cpl Hill from Ballymena serves with 1st Battalion the Royal Irish Regiment has so far placed 14th in the 50 Metre Prone and is now ready to compete in the 50 Metre 3 Positions on 14th April.
Private Fern Davies joined the Royal Logistic Corps in 2014 before joining the RLC and Army netball teams shortly after. For the support the Army has given her in her sporting career, she says she is “very grateful” and notes getting to the Commonwealth Games as a highlight of her career to date;
“Making the World Youth Cup in Africa was a highlight but making a Commonwealth Games team at 21 is pretty awesome. I'm hugely proud of this achievement.
“To get the news of being selected I was so speechless, a lot of hard work has gone into the process of making it into this hard-working team. So I was relieved that hard work pays off!”
For Gemma Rowland, her Gold Coast 2018 have yet to start with her first Rugby Sevens games being played against Australia & Fiji tomorrow.
The Royal Artillery Captain plays for the Army as well as Internationally for Wales and is gearing up for what she has called “a pinnacle” in her sporting career. Speaking of the skills she has learned in the Army which help her on the pitch, she say’s Teamwork, leadership, discipline and teamwork are key but on top of that “coping under pressure and having mental resilience” are vital.
“You have to have faith in your training and trust the process that when you’re on that field, in a high-pressure situation, you’ll make the right decision because you’ve been trained for it. That has been a huge takeaway from my Army training that has helped me in Rugby and helped me become a better player.”