After being pushed back by a year as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Tokyo Olympics is finally almost officially underway.
It’s going to be a games like no other, with athletes being forced to work and train around restrictions – and some missing out altogether.
Despite the complications, Team GB are ready and it could be another excellent summer for the country at the Olympics.
Five years ago in Rio, Team GB finished a superb second-place in the medal table with 67 medals, 27 of which were golds – and this year, that tally could be set to increase.
Here are some of the GB athletes with an excellent opportunity of standing on the coveted podium.
Adam Peaty, Swimming
Peaty lit up the pool in Rio.
The Staffordshire-born swimmer will be looking to add to his gold medal he won five years ago in the 100-metre breaststroke – and the world record which he twice broke.
Since then, Peaty has dominated the discipline, adding another five World Championship golds and an outstanding eight European Championship golds.
But he still feels he has more to give, despite continuously breaking his own world records – and is aiming to go even faster in Tokyo.
Dina Asher-Smith, Athletics
London-born sprinter Asher-Smith has been a woman on a mission in recent years.
After taking bronze over 200m in Rio, she won gold in the same event at the 2019 World Championships in Doha – adding to the healthy stash she took away from the European Championships a year prior.
In Tokyo, the 25-year-old is set to be busy. Asher-Smith will be competing in her favoured 200m, plus the 100m and 4x100m relay.
Competition is stiff with Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce and defending Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah all on top form heading into this summers’ games.
Nevertheless, Asher-Smith is hoping to become the first Briton ever to win gold in the 200m at an Olympics.
Laura Kenny, Cycling
One of Britain’s most successful athletes is once again in action this summer.
Laura Kenny is one of the nation’s best Olympians, already holding four gold medals.
Kenny will be hopeful of continuing her streak in the omnium and team pursuit events, where she has stood atop the podium at the last two games in London and Rio.
She will also be competing in the madison and could become Britain’s most successful female athlete, overtaking Dame Katherine Grainger’s tally of five.
Tom Daley, Diving
After taking bronze in both London and Rio, Daley will be hoping to do even better in Tokyo.
He will once again be participating in the individual competition and synchronised event, alongside Matty Lee.
Daley enters the summer on good form, having taken two gold medals at last year’s diving World Cup.
Max Whitlock, Gymnastics
Whitlock is another British athlete who will be desperate for another taste of gold in Tokyo; five years ago, he won the pommel horse and floor exercise disciplines.
This summer, however, the Hertfordshire gymnast has decided to solely focus on his favoured pommel horse apparatus – and despite his preparations being far from ideal after a fall at this year’s European Championships, Whitlock remains one of his country’s best medal chances.
Pat McCormack, Boxing
The Wearside fighter enters this Olympics on a hot streak.
He took gold down under at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and has another victory in the 2019 European Games to boast.
He will once again compete in the welterweight division.
The women’s football team
Team GB has selected an all-star team to take to Tokyo, with players from some of the country’s biggest teams taking part.
The familiar faces of Steph Houghton, Karen Bardsley, Lucy Bronze and Ellen White are all on board and looking for Britain’s first taste of Olympic football success.
The tournament has already started, with team GB winning their first game 2-0 against Chile.
Jade Jones, Taekwondo
Jones is hoping to make history in Tokyo, by becoming the first taekwondo fighter to win three Olympic titles – adding to her medals from London and Rio.
The Welsh athlete will participate in the -57kg category.
British interest in taekwondo should be red hot this summer, with world champion Bianca Walkden and Bradley Sinden also competing.
Seonaid McIntosh, Shooting
Scotland’s McIntosh is Britain’s most successful ever female shooter.
She will be competing in the 3x50 rifle and the 10m air rifle events and is hopeful of adding her first Olympic medal to her already substantial silverware collection.
Giles Scott, Sailing
Scott is aiming to make it back-to-back Olympic titles in Tokyo, having won the Finn class in Rio.
He recently took some time away from this discipline to compete in the Americas Cup alongside sailing legend Ben Ainslie, but returned earlier this year, winning silver in the European Championships.
Scott will be hopeful of going one better in the Japanese waters.News Now - Sport News