The Commonwealth Games will return to England this summer, as Birmingham becomes the third English city to host the Games following London in 1934 and Manchester in 2002.
More than 400 athletes are expected to compete for Team England on home soil and will be looking to ‘Bring It Home.’
Dina-Asher Smith had been one Team England fans would have been excited to watch in action but the British sprinter has recently had to pull out of her home Commonwealth Games due to a hamstring injury.
Asher-Smith had two medals to defend after her success at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games but was unable to recover from her injury sustained at the World Championships last month.
Team England were runners up at the last games in Australia, four years ago, and will be aiming to go one better at this year’s Games.
Here are some of the British stars to keep a close eye on in the summer…
Adam Peaty (swimming)
Adam Peaty has already established himself as one of Britain’s most talented swimmers. He is a three-time Olympic champion and became the first British swimmer to defend an Olympic title in the pool at Tokyo 2020.
Having already won back to back golds in the 100m breaststroke in the last two Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and Gold Coast respectively, the Uttoxeter-born swimmer will undoubtedly be aiming for a third along with bettering his two previous slivers in the 50m breaststroke.
The 27-year-old is expected to compete at this year’s games having recovered from a broken foot, which ruled him out of the World Championships in Budapest.
Peaty has claimed the injury reaffirmed his priorities and appetite for competition. He said: “This broken foot is one of the best things that has happened to me.
“It has slowed me down, reminded me what is important, which is family and the support around you. But it has given me that drive, I don’t want anyone else to have those titles. I believe in the bottom of my heart that world records can be broken again and I am not finished yet.”
Triathlon mixed relay team
Despite the injury to Jonny Brownlee, there will be high expectations for Team England’s mixed triathlon team in Birmingham.
Both Alex Yee and Georgia Taylor Brown were a part of the team which won gold during Tokyo 2020 and it is expected that Team England will once again go into this tournament as favourites.
Alex Yee, 24, has said he is delighted to be a part of the team, he said: “To win the gold medal would be a special thing, and to do it at home, is a feeling I could never even imagine,I will do everything I can to get to that point.”
They will also be joined by Sophie Coldwell and Dan Dixon who will be making his first ever appearance at a Commonwealth Games.
Matthew Hudson-Smith (men’s 400m)
Matthew Hudson-Smith became a European champion in 2018 when he stormed to 400m gold in Berlin.
Hudson Smith will be seeking gold at this year’s Commonwealth Games following an injury set back on the Gold Coast in 2018. He was also an integral part of the 4x400 metres relay team which won gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
The 27-year old from Wolverampton has suffered a series of injury setbacks in his career but is entering this tournament in a rich vein of form, having recorded a personal best of 44.35 seconds for the 400m.
Katarina Johnson-Thompson (heptathlon)
The defending Commonwealth champion, Katarian Johnson-Thompson will be aiming to win back to back gold medals at this year’s Commonwealth Games following her success on the Gold Coast in 2018.
The 29-year-old recovered from a ruptured achilles to make last year’s Olympic squad but was forced to rule out the heptathlon due to a calf injury.
The Liverpool born heptathlete holds the British record, having recorded 6981 points on the way to winning World Championship gold in 2019.
She has expressed her excitment at competing in Birmingham and returning to a place she has competed at before, she said: “ It’s got a lot of history for me and it’s just perfect that the Commonwealth Games will be there. It’s just going to be great, I cant wait.”