Women could outnumber men for Team GB at Tokyo 2020
12 March 2019 / 12:07
Women could outnumber men in the British Olympic team for the first time in Tokyo next year.
International Olympic Committee officials are striving for gender neutrality in the 11,000 athletes expected to compete for over 200 nations next summer.
And should Phil Neville’s England Lionesses earn one of the four European qualification spots at this summer’s Fifa Women’s World Cup, Team GB could make history.
At London 2012 just over 48% of the British team were female but that figure dropped to 44% for Rio.
British women produced some of the most memorable moments of the London 2012 Games, from Dame Jessica Ennis Hill’s famous heptathlon victory to Nicola Adams's historic boxing gold and Dame Katherine Grainger’s success in rowing's double sculls, a first Olympic win after three previous silvers.
And - with 500 days to go until Tokyo’s Opening Ceremony - it’s clear they’ve provided a trailblazing inspiration to the prospective class of 2020.
“We’ve fantastic women role models in multiple Olympic champions like Heather Stanning, Helen Glover, Jade Jones, Charlotte Dujardin and Nicola Adams and, of course, Lizzy Yarnold in PyeongChang last year,” said Team GB’s chef de mission Mark England.
“Their achievements and other successes, such as our brilliant gold women's hockey gold. medal in Rio, have made an enormous impact in terms of inspiring the emerging class of young female athletes, so much so we may have more women than men in our team for Tokyo.”