Team Wales strengthens leadership ahead of 2018 Games

Team Wales have today announced a further two appointments to the senior management team that will be leading Welsh athletes to the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 2018.

Ashleigh Crowter has been appointed General Team Manager responsible for media and communications, whilst Gerwyn Owen will be the General Team Manager with overall responsibility for performance. Gerwyn will also take the additional role of Deputy Chef de Mission. Both will be working closely with Team Wales Chef de Mission, Prof. Nicola Phillips, as well as the Board and staff of Commonwealth Games Wales, in the run up, during and after the Games.

This follows the recent announcement of the appointment of Dr Gareth Jones as Chief Medical Officer leading the Medical Services Team and Sian Knott as Lead Physiotherapist.

Gerwyn and Ashleigh will be carrying out these voluntary posts in addition to their full time employment with Disability Sport Wales and BBC Wales respectively.

Gerwyn has been Academy Manager for Disability Sport Wales since 2007, and has since supported over 30 Welsh athletes to compete at Paralympics Games.The successful Academy has also produced many athletes such as Aled Sion Davies and Rhys Jones who have gone on to medal for Team Wales at Commonwealth Games. Gerwyn started his career in sport development in 2002, initially as a Disability Sport Wales Development Officer for Gwynedd Council, before moving over to Disability Sport Wales as their National Disability Swimming Development Officer. Whilst in this role he acted as manager for various teams including  many Welsh & British squads, travelling all over the world. In 2006 he was appointed the Para Swimming Team Manager for Team Wales at the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games. He also attended the Commonwealth Games in Delhi 2010 and Glasgow 2014 as the Para Sport Manager. 

Ashleigh is a familiar face to followers of Welsh sport. Currently External Affairs Manager at BBC Wales, he has had a career spanning almost two decades with the national broadcaster. Until last year, he was the sport reporter and presenter for BBC Wales Today, covering the best stories in Welsh sport at elite and community level. During that time, he reported on Welsh success at the Beijing and London Olympics, a record-breaking performance for Team Wales at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, two Six Nations titles for Wales, two Rugby World Cups and Wales’ historic qualification for Euro 2016.  As a producer for BBC Sport Wales, he launched a daily Welsh sports news bulletin for digital service BBC 2W and produced the first series of magazine programme Sport Wales for BBC Two Wales.

The third General Team Manager position with responsibility for operations is Commonwealth Games Wales Games Manager Cathy Williams who has been in post with Commonwealth Games Wales as a member of staff since June 2016. Cathy graduated from Cardiff Metropolitan University with a degree in Sport Development, and started her career as a Personal Trainer and then Physical Education teacher before moving into broadcast journalism and production roles, most recently with the BBC. She has also presented and reported from many high profile sport events, including the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Professor Nicola Phillips said: “We are all very excited about these appointments. Gerwyn and Ashleigh bring a wealth of experience and are both extremely passionate about Welsh sport. They also have first hand experience of the Commonwealth Games. Combined with Cathy’s operational management skills, we have a fantastic leadership team in place to support our athletes on the road to Gold Coast 2018.”

Chair of the Commonwealth Games Wales Board Helen Phillips said: “For Team Wales to have the best possible chance at winning medals in 2018, we need a strong pool of skills and expertise behind the athletes to secure that an excellent performance environment is in place ahead, and during the Games. We have, in Nicki, an excellent Chef de Mission, and as a Board we are hugely encouraged to see such a high calibre management Team being built around her role. These latest appointments will, I’m sure, come as great news to Welsh athletes, as well as the coaches and governing bodies which are working with them to prepare for qualification.”