Local athletes to compete in seven Olympic sports

As the countdown to the Tokyo Olympics continues, Markham has plenty to cheer about, as 15 athletes who live and/or train here prepare to compete on the global stage.

That includes hometown hero and renowned sprinter Andre De Grasse and six members of an eight-member badminton team – the largest badminton team in Canadian Olympic history.

For the first time, Canada will compete in every Olympic badminton event. The Markham Pan Am Centre has served as Badminton Canada’s Olympic Training Camp. “The journey to the Olympics is never done alone I want to recognize the parents, siblings, coaches, mentors, supporters, friends, sponsors, sport organizations and everyone who lends a hand in this marvelous journey for each athlete – congratulations to you all,” says Joe Morisette, Executive Director of Badminton Canada.

Jason Ho-Shue, Rachel Honderich, Joshua Hurlburt-Yu, Michelle Li, Nyl Yakura and Brian Yang are all members of the badminton team. Javier Acevedo, Tessa Cieplucha, Joshua Liendo and Kayla Sanchez will compete in swimming events. Jayde Riviere is a member of the football (soccer) team, Gabrielle Smith will compete in rowing, Andrew Coe will compete in rugby and Jeremy Hazin will put his skills to the test in table tennis.

The City invites residents to get in the Olympic spirit and show their local pride by watching Remembering Tokyo 1964 on Sunday, July 11 at 2 p.m. The online special, presented by the Friends of the Markham Museum, features Markham Olympic Silver Medallist Bill Crothers and Order of Canada journalist and news anchor Lloyd Robertson, whose first overseas assignment was the Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games.

“It’s often said that Markham has talent and our city will be well represented at the upcoming Tokyo Olympic Games by outstanding homegrown athletes that will be proudly representing Canada in their medal pursuit,” says Mayor Frank Scarpitti. “Good luck to our Canadian athletes and thank you to the families, coaches and training staff for nurturing our talent and providing them the support needed to pursue their dreams.”

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games run from July 23 to August 8.

From left: Adam van Koeverden, Senator Martha Deacon, Executive Director of Badminton Canada Joe Morissette, Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti and VIPs cheer on members of the largest badminton team in Canadian Olympic history, coaches and support team as they prepare to compete in Tokyo 2020. Photo courtesy of the City of Markham.

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