Chinese Olympic athletes chose Wakefield to train

Group shot with from left to right: Chair of Yorkshire Gold and Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire Gary Verity, Leeds Metropolitan University Vice Chancellor Professor Susan Price, University of Leeds Vice Chancellor Professor Michael Arthur, Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor Keith Wakefield shaking hands with Director for National Team Management in the China Olympic Committee Mr Yang, Finance Manager of the Chinese Olympic Committee Miss Lu, Director of Anglo Chinese Culture and Sport Association and China consultant for Leeds Dr Herman Wang, Director of Leeds Chinese Community Association Mr Leung, assistant to Dr Wang Jean Tsang and far right Leeds Metropolitan University Head of Sport Sally Nickson
Group shot with from left to right: Chair of Yorkshire Gold and Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire Gary Verity, Leeds Metropolitan University Vice Chancellor Professor Susan Price, University of Leeds Vice Chancellor Professor Michael Arthur, Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor Keith Wakefield shaking hands with Director for National Team Management in the China Olympic Committee Mr Yang, Finance Manager of the Chinese Olympic Committee Miss Lu, Director of Anglo Chinese Culture and Sport Association and China consultant for Leeds Dr Herman Wang, Director of Leeds Chinese Community Association Mr Leung, assistant to Dr Wang Jean Tsang and far right Leeds Metropolitan University Head of Sport Sally Nickson

Wakefield Hockey Club is set to welcome Olympic athletes to their base at College Grove as China has chosen to train there during next year’s games.

Officials from the sporting superpower visited the city on Friday during their stay in Yorkshire.

Around 300 athletes, coaches and staff from China will be based in Leeds as part of their European pre-Games headquarters.

The female hockey team will practise in Wakefield before heading to London.

The men’s hockey team could also use the facilities, but have not yet qualified.

Norman Hughes, director of coaching at the club, said: “It is fantastic news for Wakefield that Olympic stars will be in the city and I am very proud for the hockey club.

“We hoped we would be used as a training camp, but did not know which country until last week.

“The players are thrilled and it will be inspiring for our many talented youngsters.”

The club is made up of 500 players, coaches and volunteers who will hold their own mini Olympics event during celebrations next year.

The club is currently seeking planning permission to transform a neighbouring former rugby pitch into another all-weather surface, which will boost their sporting credentials.

China was the most successful nation at the last Olympic Games in Beijing.

Residents and schoolchildren will be able to watch some of the world’s top athletes training during their ten-day stay.