Commonwealth Games England has selected five young athletes to receive the Sir John Hanson Young Talent Scholarship.
Alicia Maude (rugby sevens), Ethan Hussey (athletics), Charlie McIntyre (wheelchair basketball), Erin Little (swimming) and Nadeem Dalvi (badminton) have all been selected as part of the programme devised to help young athletes in their development.
The scholarship has been designed to support the next generation of English talent both financially and through a dedicated programme of support. The programme includes athlete workshops and mentoring to assist them in fulfilling their potential on the international stage as they embark on their sporting journey.
"We are so grateful to be able to provide five athletes with this scholarship," said Team England CEO Mark Osikoya.
"This scholarship will help to support these young athletes on their journey to a successful future in sport.
"We look forward to seeing these athletes join the immense level of English talent that has come before them as they embark on their future endeavours."
Alicia Maude (rugby sevens)
Maude, 21, represented Team England at the 2022 Commonwealth Games and will now be one of the five athletes to receive support from the Hanson Scholarship Programme.
"I feel honoured and humbled to have been chosen for the Hanson Scholarship Programme, out of all the dedicated athletes who applied," she said.
"It will give me the best opportunity to take my sporting career onwards to the highest levels of performance, and also to showcase women’s rugby at a time when women’s sporting achievements are starting to be properly recognised.
"Hopefully I will be able to help inspire the next generation of young athletes and show that a full-time career in women’s rugby is an ambition that can become reality for women and girls."
Ethan Hussey (athletics)
European U23 800m silver medallist Hussey, 20, trains under Andy Henderson at Leeds Beckett University and believes the award will be a generous help, not just to himself but also his wider support team.
"It is truly an honour to have been selected to be part of the Hanson Scholarship cohort," he said.
"I am very grateful to have had my track success recognised. Whilst already being successful in my sport, the fund will allow me to have the best possible lead up into further international competitions with the most notable hopefully being the next Commonwealth Games.
"I may be the direct recipient of this award but it will also be a vast help to my team around me, like my coach for example, and also my parents, who support me massively financially."
Charlie McIntyre (wheelchair basketball)
McIntyre, 18, was part of the men's wheelchair basketball team who won bronze at Birmingham 2022.
Then just 17, McIntyre was among the youngest Team England athletes to compete last summer and is now looking to reach his full potential with the help of the Hanson Scholarship.
He said: "I’m really honoured to have been selected for the Hanson Scholarship Programme.
"The scholarship will massively help my chances in reaching my full potential as it provides me with so many resources which I know will make me such a better athlete.
"I’m looking forward to exploring new opportunities this will give me and I believe it will open a whole new corridor on my sporting career which gives me a new buzz as a young athlete.
"The programme gives me a sense of pride where an organisation would want to invest their time, effort and resources which is really refreshing and drives me onwards to achieving my high goals in sport."
Erin Little (swimming)
Swimming star Little, 18, won four medals for Team England at the 2023 Trinbago Commonwealth Youth Games.
With two gold and two silvers to her name, the freestyle specialist showcased her talent and cemented her name as one to watch in the future of her sport.
"I feel grateful, proud and privileged to have been selected to be part of the John Hanson programme," she said.
"The belief shown in me for my selection onto the programme will enhance my performance, drive and continued passion for the sport.
"It is an incredible opportunity that will keep me focused on future selection and enable me to develop my swimming career even further.
"The programme and financial assistance will also give me the chance to pursue opportunities that will enable me to perform at my optimum. These will include training camps, sports massages and attendance at high level meets."
Nadeem Dalvi (badminton)
Dalvi, 19, became under-19 men's singles English champion last year and revealed he was star struck to receive the scholarship.
He said: "When the email arrived, I was initially astounded as I did not expect to be awarded this grant in light of the number of elite athletes in England who would be applying.
"When I heard the news, I was shocked but also delighted and proud once the news settled in my head.
"The Hanson Scholarship Programme will be a huge help to me as I cement my place at England senior level. By helping to pay for training camps, travel and different events/competitions, I will get vital experience and exposure. This will propel me to the next level.
"The funding will enable me to travel the globe over the next three years in order to compete against and train with some of the top-level seniors in the men's singles discipline."