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- 10 September 2013 00:00
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The Sainsbury's 2013 School Games finals have today begun in Sheffield with the multi-sport event for some of the UK’s elite young athletes set to take place from September 12-15.
The Sainsbury's 2013 School Games finals are the culmination of regional School Games events across the UK – with the top competitors going through the event in Sheffield.
Around 1,600 participants are competing in the twelve current and future Olympic and Paralympic sports of fencing, rugby sevens, gymnastics, hockey, badminton, athletics, cycling, judo, swimming, table tennis, volleyball and wheelchair basketball.
Meanwhile there are disability events in six sports of athletics, fencing, swimming, table tennis, cycling and wheelchair basketball.
The event has received the backing of Lord Sebastian Coe, the former London 2012 chairman and current British Olympic Association (BOA) who previously lived and trained in Sheffield when he was one of the world’s best middle distance runners.
"I am delighted that this year's Sainsbury's School Games National Finals are being held in Sheffield - a city which has been the home to so many of our Olympic and Paralympic athletes over the years - myself included,” said the double 1500 metre Olympic champion.
"The National Finals provides an excellent chance for some of our best young athletes to experience what it feels like to compete in a major sporting event and to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis-Hill and Dame Sarah Storey.
"London 2012 took place just over a year ago, and Sainsbury's School Games is a great example of the sporting legacy from the Games.
"I am sure that some of the young athletes competing here will go on to be role models that future generations will aspire to emulate.”
Across the four-day multi-sport event in Sheffield, approximately 700 coaches, support staff and volunteers will give round-the-clock support and advice, collectively committing more than 22,000 hours of their time.