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Plaid Cymru deputy leader calls for Wales to compete in its own right at next Olympics

09 Aug 2021 3 minutes Read
Olympic rings. By Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. (CC 2,0)

The deputy leader of Plaid Cymru has called for Wales to be allowed to compete as at the next Olympics a nation in its own right.

Rhun ap Iorwerth, the MS for Ynys Môn, said Wales should be represented at the Paris Olympiad in 2024 during a Facebook live session with constituents.

He was speaking after Welsh athletes scored a raft of successes at Tokyo 2020.

According to BBC Wales, the Covid-19 delayed Games saw 11 Welsh athletes contribute to eight medals in what was Wales’ second most successful Games after Rio 2016.

Caerphilly boxer Lauren Price secured Team GB’s final medal of the Games, winning the middleweight boxing title and becoming the first Welsh boxer to win Olympic gold.

Asked whether Wales should be allowed to compete at the Olympics, Rhun ap Iorwerth said: “Yes, absolutely – 100 per cent. We should be competing at the Olympics as a nation.

“There was an interesting assessment of this by  Gareth Rhys Owen who is one of the BBC Wales sports presenters.

“He said we might end up getting fewer medals. A number of medal winners have won medals as part of teams – swimming team and that kind of thing.

“Maybe we wouldn’t get those team medals but you would have more Welsh athletes having the opportunity to compete at the Olympics.

“You would have that joint endeavour as a nation supporting Welsh athletes competing under the Welsh flag and, yes, I would dearly love to see that happening, as happens in the Commonwealth Games, in football and rugby and so many other sports. Yes, it would be nice at the next Olympics.

‘Victory’ 

After her outstanding victory on the final day of the games, Price paid an emotional tribute to her grandparents, who supported her throughout her journey to become Wales first ever Olympic boxing champion.

The director of Sport Wales, Brian Davies, believes similar investments in time and money will be common among all successful athletes.

He told the Radio Wales Breakfast programme: “The emotional bit there, when you add all that up, it’s an incredible cocktail of striving and effort, but that could be true of any one of those medallists.

“Every single one of those names will have made some sacrifice, or their parents or their family or their support staff have, and that’s what makes it a fantastic achievement and gives the inspiration that really it’s all about getting people up off their couches and doing their own things.

“Even if they don’t win an Olympic medal or a Paralympic medal, they can still do their own personal podiums and I guess that’s what Lauren Price, Lauren Williams and the others will do.

“Encourage people to be active, to show that you can achieve, no matter where you are from.”

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Jack
Jack
1 month ago

This is a good soundbite after a successful Olympics but is there any kind of proper plan to make this happen?

I remember after Geraint Thomas won the Tour de France, Plaid were pushing for a leg of the Tour to be held in Wales. As soon as the hype from that died down I don’t think we ever heard from it again.

It’s easy to make a passing comment about the flavour of the month. A bit harder to come up with a proper policy for it.

Jonathan Edwards
Jonathan Edwards
1 month ago
Reply to  Jack

A proper plan would be for Wales to take the same steps as every other “nation”. Get control (at least) of the Welsh legal system, raise most of our own taxes. Get Dominion Status. As Ireland etc etc actually did. Might be enough to get us into Olympics. But if we need 100% Indy then we’d have to take that step too, ie get full international recognition. Noone said this was easy. A worry that we have not yet united behind this simple plan. Come on, Wales

Jack
Jack
1 month ago

Chances are that you would need 100% independence to enter the Olympics. The only teams that enter the Olympics that aren’t fully independent are places like Bermuda or Puerto Rico that don’t have independence but also don’t get to send MP’s to parliament/congress. Worse of both worlds imo.

If Wales wants independence then fair enough but lets be honest, an Olympic team is not going to be at the forefront of people’s mind when they make that decision.

Which is why “Imagine Wales at the Olympics” is just a soundbite for the flavour of the month. It’s pretty meaningless really.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago

I don’t see much point if we are still tied to UKBIN. Free us from Westminster THEN field new solo sports teams.

#1Chris
#1Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

I see my clone is back again. Will this vindictive campaign against me never end?!

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  #1Chris

Oh hello you tedious bell end.

Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

I recall , several years ago calls for Wales to compete in the Olympic games, and the IOC were asked to comment. They said it only deals with the BOA, as they represent Britain, but if they wanted to enter as England, and allow the rest of the countries to compete as seperate nations it could happen, as it does in international football.. The BOA were asked to comment and said it had no intention of disbanding, and in effect, Wales and the rest can forget about it. That is why GB have entered mens football teams in the Olympic… Read more »

Andrew Redman
Andrew Redman
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

Where did Lauren Price do all her boxing training for the Olympics? Is there separate Lottery funding for Wales ,Scotland and N.Ireland?

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew Redman

Nope – is the answer you clearly want – however, that is something we will definitely need to set up upon independence.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew Redman

Oh? So you claim special ownership of this because Lauren Price did some training in Leeds or Sheffield or somewhere in the stolen North? Then I guess Wales can claim all Velodrome cycling medals because team GB do training in Newport

Last edited 1 month ago by Chris
Dim problem
Dim problem
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

Isn’t the velodrome training done in Manchester?

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Dim problem

Just like Lauren Price did SOME training in’t Nurth, the cycling team do SOME training in the Newport velodrome.

Last edited 1 month ago by Chris
Gerwyn
Gerwyn
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

Plenty of examples of non-sovereign / devolved countries taking part setting a precedent. IOC just playing politics to keep UK/BOA happy for now. But if Hong Kong, Puerto Rico and others can do it then Wales has a very strong case – legally it could challenge hard.

Dafydd Evans
Dafydd Evans
1 month ago

Sad as it may be to admit it (because of all the hard work these athletes put into it) I just didnt have it in my heart to support Team GB. There is zero emotional bond between me and entity known as ‘GB’ … and during my very limited veiwing I hoped to see Welsh athletes with the Welsh dragon….dont recall seeing any though …are they forbidden to hold one?

The position would be totally transformed if Wales were represented as itself at the games.

Gerwyn
Gerwyn
1 month ago
Reply to  Dafydd Evans

Yes and it would also boost our national profile on the world stage which is heavily diluted as the smallest (NI athletes can choose GB or Eire) nation in GB’s make up. Even if we got less medals we would definitely do quite well based on history and be high up the medal table for a small nation. It’s not all about medals though – profile and being proud to see your own nation represented is huge

Dim problem
Dim problem
1 month ago
Reply to  Dafydd Evans

If you can’t find it in yourself to support Welsh athletes because they don’t compete under your preferred flag, that says something pretty sad about you. What’s the difference between that, and the flag-sh*ggers who fetishise the Union Flag?

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Dim problem

Wow who made you the arbiter of people’s allegiances?

Dim problem
Dim problem
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

I didn’t arbitrate on anyone’s allegiance. Dafydd literally said “ I just didnt have it in my heart to support Team GB. There is zero emotional bond between me and entity known as ‘GB’ … and during my very limited veiwing I hoped to see Welsh athletes with the Welsh dragon” – they made their own allegiance clear.

Reading comprehension isn’t really your strong point, is it, Chris?

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Dim problem

“then that says something pretty sad about you”. Nah comprehension’s easy. Especially when written by pompous clowns.
(Also you might want to check the difference between Arbiter and Abitrator before you challenge anybody’s comprehension skills. Save you looking stupid next time)

Last edited 1 month ago by Chris
Dafydd Evans
Dafydd Evans
1 month ago
Reply to  Dim problem

yeh says im a Welsh patriot who doesnt like to see our identity hidden .. and im proud of it.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Dafydd Evans

Same. Can’t support any GB team since the flag-shaggers have weaponised nationality

Dim problem
Dim problem
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

Of course, no-one has ever used Y Draig Coch to weaponise nationality…

Chris
Chris
1 month ago
Reply to  Dim problem

Hmmm…. Now which other nation’s identity has Wales tried to wipe out? Perhaps you can help me out Uncl Tŵm, since the accusation is yours

hdavies15
hdavies15
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

D.P certainly sounds like a bit of an U.T today. Maybe he/she is getting flak from someone at work or stuck at home in solitary !

There was one athlete who was seen clutching a Draig Goch banner – might have been the taekwando silver medallist Lauren Williams from the Gwent area just after she lost in the final but was still elated with her achievement. Put up a hell of a good show too. Well done her. Looks like she may take over as pace setter in that sport from Jade Jones

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