By Owen Morgan
Kirsty Taylor will captain the Great Britain team taking part in the World Para Athletics Junior Championships starting in Switzerland on Thursday.
The Caldicot sprinter, who will be making her debut in a GB vest, is certainly taking the responsibilities of the role seriously as she has already been dubbed “mum” by members of the 15-strong team.
On the eve of the championships, Taylor said: “I’ve been trying to bring everyone together. We all live in different parts of the country, so it has been great to get to know each other.
“I’ve been making sure they are all drinking plenty of water – they are even starting to call me ‘mum’ now because I have been bothering them all.
“I’m really pleased to be named team captain; to be able to support all the guys in the team and bring everyone together. Everyone has done so well to earn their place on the team, so be captain for this championship is a great honour.”
The Disability Sport Wales Para Academy athlete will compete in the T44 100m and 200m for athletes with lower leg impairment competing without a prosthesis.
Taylor – who is supported by the British Athletics Paralympic Futures Academy – runs in the 200m on Thursday and the 100m on Friday.
The 19-year-old is excited to be making her GB debut.
“It’s huge. We’ve all worked so hard to get here. It’s a massive honour to represent your country. It’s the best you can get – it’s very rewarding to earn your place on the team.
“I’m just looking forward to getting out and enjoying it. It is my first championships. Everyone wants to run well and win medals, that’s the aim of the game. I want to go out and enjoy it and be part of a great team.”
Taylor is joined in the GB squad by fellow DSW Para Academy athlete Molly Hopkins, who will be competing in the Under-17 age group.
The Swansea sprinter, who placed first and second in the 200m and 100m at the Bayer Invitational Meeting in Leverkusen, Germany, last month will be competing in the Under-17 T62 100m – for athletes with lower limb impairments competing with a prosthetic – on Thursday.
The championships in Nottwil runs until August 4 and will be streamed live on the World Para Athletics website.
The full Great Britain team can be found on the British Athletics website.