Speaking on the day of two years to go until the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, Loughborough based Powerlifter Ali Jawad is excited by the prospect of another home multi-sport games.

First home Games since Manchester 2002.

“I can only compare a home games to 2012, for me if it's anything near like that scale we are in for the best Commonwealth Games ever", Jawad said.

“I’m sure the public will come out and pack the venues and support the team which is something I can’t wait for. The people closest to me will get to watch me again in international competition and that is obviously quite rare and gets me really excited.”

Jawad, who was born without legs also suffers from Crohn’s disease since being diagnosed with it in 2009. This has meant the Lebanon born lifter has had to train in isolation over the past two years and not just since Covid-19 restrictions came in.

“It’s not been a new situation for me at all, so it may actually put me in an advantage as I will be in better shape than a lot of people coming out of it going into the Paralympic Games next year and 2022 as well. That hard work and protocols that I’ve implemented the last two years have put me in good stead.

"My best performances have actually been at the Commonwealth Games."

“My best performances have actually been at the Commonwealth Games. All my comebacks from Crohn’s disease has been driven by the Commonwealth Games. Growing up it was all about the Paralympic Games but actually if you dissect my career the Commonwealth Games is where I’ve been able to bounce back and achieve these incredible memories.”

The powerlifter who will be hoping to compete at his fourth Commonwealth Games at Birmingham 2022 also sits on the Commonwealth Games England board as an athlete representative.

“What makes the Commonwealth Games special for me is that you are with a lot of the Olympic sports too. Obviously in the Paralympics we are with all the para-sports but in Commonwealth Games it is para-sport and Olympic sports in one place at the same time, which is very special and unique. It feels like a family team, where everyone supports each other and really happy and making sure our performance levels match that which is why the last two Commonwealth Games we have performed really well."

Birmingham 2022 will play host to the biggest para sports programme the Commonwealth Games has ever seen following the inclusion of para table tennis last year alongside beach volleyball and women’s T20 cricket. The new addition of women’s T20 cricket to the Games, with matches to be played at Edgbaston Cricket Ground mean that for the first time there is expected to be more medals available for women than there are for men.

 The Games themselves have also been moved 24 hours from their original date of the 27th July, to the 28th July 2022. This change was made due to the unprecedented impact of Covid-19 on the sports landscape and will create an incredible summer of sport in 2022.

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