The 2018 Commonwealth Games – How Will the Home Nations Fare?

The XXI Commonwealth Games begin tomorrow on Australia’s Gold Coast and athletes from all four home nations will be competing at the event. Here’s a quick guide to the squads and potential medallists.

England’s Commonwealth Games Team – Which Athletes Will Succeed?

England have a host of Olympic, World and Commonwealth champions in their 400-member squad. They came home from the 2014 edition of the event with 174 medals4, with 58 athletes having topped the podium. Some of those competitors will be back in action this year.

Former Commonwealth Games medallists heading Down Under include: Tom Daley (diving); Adam Peaty (swimming); Max Whitlock (gymnastics); Adam Gemili (athletics); Sophie Thornhill and her pilot, Helen Scott (para-cycling); and Sophie Hitchon (athletics).

Other England squad members to keep an eye on include:

• Ellie Robinson, the para-swimmer who won a gold and a bronze at the Rio 2016 Olympics.
• Alice Kinsella, who recently came third in the all-round competition at the 2018 Gymnastics World Cup.
• Cycling’s Emily Madison, who won a gold and a silver at the 2018 World Championships.

The 2018 Commonwealth Games – Who are Scotland’s Potential Winners?

Scotland won a whopping 53 medals at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. This year, they’re aiming to beat their record for podium places when it comes to overseas editions of the competition and have set a medal target of 30. They certainly have enough high-quality athletes on their team to achieve this, including many defending Commonwealth champions and Olympians.

Potential medallists include:

• Katie Archibald, the cyclist, whose haul of awards includes a bronze from the 2014 Commonwealth Games, a gold from the 2016 Rio Olympics and three World Championship title wins.
• Hannah Miley, who’ll be attempting to win a third consecutive 400m women’s swimming medley title.
• Gymnast Dan Purvis, a gold medallist in London 2012, who won a gold, a silver and a bronze at the 2014 Commonwealth Games

Which Welsh Athletes Could Gain Commonwealth Glory in Queensland?

The Welsh team consists of more than 200 athletes, including many who are tipped for success Down Under. Whether she ends up on the podium or not, Anna Hursey has already become one of the stars of the Welsh squad. The Cardiff-based table tennis player is just eleven years of age.

Other notable athletes competing for Wales include:

• Hollie Arnold, who won gold in the F46 Javelin at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
• Ben Llewellin, who clinched silver in the skeet shooting at the 2017 ISSF World Cup.
• Laura Halford, who won a silver and two bronzes in the rhythmic gymnastics at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Going for Gold at the Games – Who is Representing Northern Ireland?

88 athletes will be representing Northern Ireland at this year’s event and there are some title contenders amongst the squad. Can they achieve more than the twelve podium places gained by the 2014 team in Glasgow? Nine of those came courtesy of boxers, so they’ll be hoping for success in the ring again this year.

Athletes to watch include:

• Steven Donnelly, bronze medallist in the men’s welterweight boxing division at Glasgow 2014.
• Michaela Walsh, who won a silver in the women’s flyweight boxing at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
• David Calvert, who has won eight shooting medals in the ten editions of the Games that he’s competed in.

Are you looking forward to the Commonwealth Games? Which home nations’ athletes do you think will claim titles? Chat to us on Twitter or Facebook, or leave a comment.