Cambridge Blues are out in force in Great Britain squad for World Rowing Championships
Four Cambridge University Blues have been named in the Great Britain squad for the 2019 World Rowing Championships in Austria.
Imogen Grant, Holly Hill, Melissa Wilson and Henry Fieldman have been selected in different crews for the event in Linz from August 25 to September 1 which serves as the first and primary opportunity to qualify boats for next year's Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
Cambridge University Women's Boat Club's Grant won gold in the lightweight single sculls at the World Cup Regatta in Rotterdam, but returns to the lightweight double, where she will be partnered by Emily Craig.
Former clubmate Hill and Polly Swann won bronze in the pair in the Netherlands, but will move into the four alongside Emily Ford and Sara Parfett.
Cambridge University Boat Club's Fieldman will cox the men's eight of Tom George, James Rudkin, Josh Bugajski, Mohamed Sbihi, Jacob Dawson, Ollie Wynne-Griffith, Mat Tarrant and Tom Ford.
They won their first gold medal of the Olympiad in Rotterdam last month and will be challenging for one of only five Olympic qualification spots in Linz.
Sbihi, who was part of the gold medal-winning men’s four from Rio 2016, said: “As the Olympic and Paralympic qualification regatta, these World Championships are so important.
“The eight is the hardest boat on the sweep side to qualify - only five nations can qualify directly and ideally we don’t want to have to go through extra qualification rounds next year.
"It’s a really important regatta for everyone involved and has a big impact on the wider team.”
CUWBC's Wilson completes the quartet of Light Blues in the GB squad, having been named in the women's quadruple sculls alongside Jess Leyden, Mathilda Hodgkins-Byrne and Charlotte Hodgkins-Byrne.
British Rowing director of peformance Brendan Purcell said: “Following this season’s World Cup series, we’ve selected a team that we’re confident is capable of challenging for the Olympic
and Paralympic qualification places available.
“We’re in a great position following our training camps in the lead up to Worlds, where the crews have been challenging themselves to keep stepping up their performances day by day.”
This season’s World Cup champions, the men’s eight, will be racing with a point to prove