Birmingham 2022 reveals ticket details for biggest ever Commonwealth Games sports programme

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 15: Gold medalists England pose during the medal ceremony for the Netball Gold Medal Match on day 11 of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games at Coomera Indoor Sports Centre on April 15, 2018 on the Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Today marks two years to go until the start of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games on the 28th July – and not even a global pandemic has stopped Team England stars working hard to deliver success for the home nation in 2022.

Team England have today released a set of images and video series entitled ‘Team England 2020: United, Diverse and Successful’ which highlight how three athletes – gymnast Courtney Tulloch, para swimmer Alice Tai and basketball player Dominique Allen – have been training hard during the Covid-19 crisis to ensure they are in the best shape possible to deliver medal success for England in Birmingham.

This campaign is based around Team England’s values of United, Diverse and Successful, with each athlete training hard within their hometowns and cities despite the Covid-19 pandemic affecting their normal training and competing routine.

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As the country emerges out of lockdown, the Vitality Roses have also shown how they have remained motivated and found unique ways to train with a Commonwealth Games on home soil, in which they’ll look to defend their title, on their minds.

The Vitality Roses were crowned Commonwealth Games champions for the first time in their history in 2018, after Helen Housby scored with no time left on the clock to beat host nation Australia 52-51 in the gold medal match.

Discussing the recently announced return to training plan, Vitality Roses Head Coach Jess Thirlby said: “We are really pleased to be able to begin preparing for some on court activity, this is a really positive step for netball’s gradual resumption. Our athletes have been itching to get back on court so this news is very much welcomed.

“Despite our eagerness to begin training together again, we have to be mindful to start small, get the environments right and then grow our training groups from there. Whilst we have big competitions, like the next Commonwealth Games, on the horizon, the health and safety of our players, staff and the Netball Family is our main priority. With this in mind, we are following the Government’s guidance and that of our medical team, as well as speaking to venue staff throughout this process to ensure the Roses’ training environment is optimal.”

A countdown to Birmingham 2022 wouldn’t be complete without a nod to the city itself. The people of Birmingham, members of the public and athletes alike, have had to adjust to this ‘new normal’ just like everyone else, but now there is light at the end of the tunnel, and they can start looking towards Birmingham 2022.

The 22nd Commonwealth Games will be held in Birmingham, the third time that England has hosted the Games in its history. It will be the first home Games for England since Manchester 2002, 18 years ago.

It also comes after the monumental Vitality Netball World Cup 2019, which enjoyed record breaking ticket sales and inspired a considerable increase in participation, was hosted in Liverpool.

Following the World Cup, a change of venue for the netball was announced with the sport moving from the Coventry Indoor Arena to the NEC, increasing capacity and allowing more netball fans the opportunity to enjoy the sport in the summer of 2022. The news came after a routine review of venues, nearly two years on from Birmingham’s bid.

Commonwealth Games England CEO, Paul Blanchard said: “The two years to go landmark is something that Team England as the home nation of Birmingham 2022 is thrilled to embrace. These home Games which are right on our doorstep will give our fans the opportunity to support our English athletes and give them the best chance to succeed. Netball has always been a key part of the sporting programme for Team England and we have enjoyed working closely with England Netball to great success on and off the court at previous Commonwealth Games.”

Commonwealth Games gold medallist Natalie Haythornthwaite said: “Even hearing that it is two years to go is so exciting, especially for netball as we were lucky enough to have the World Cup in England in 2019. So for our next major Championships to be in England is the pinnacle of everyone’s thoughts, so the Commonwealth Games in a home country would be absolutely phenomenal. It’s so exciting and I’m sure those two years are going to absolutely fly by and I’d absolutely love to be there.”

The Games will bring together 6,500 athletes and officials; cheered on by an inclusive, welcoming and sport-loving city region that is already home to 187 nationalities from around the Commonwealth and the rest of the world. With a richly vibrant and diverse population, what better place to bring together a successful Team England, united in its diversity.

Birmingham 2022 will also play host to the biggest para sports programme the Commonwealth Games has ever seen following the inclusion of para table tennis alongside beach volleyball and women’s T20 cricket. Para table tennis and beach volleyball both featured in the previous Games in the Gold Coast, Australia in 2018.

The new addition of women’s T20 cricket to the Games, with matches to be played at Edgbaston Cricket Ground, means that for the first time there are expected to be more medals available for women than for men.

The Games themselves have also been moved 24 hours from their original date of the 27th July, to the 28th July 2022. This change was made due to the unprecedented impact of Covid-19 on the sports landscape.

All in all, we’re set for another incredible summer of sport in 2022.

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