Elite Team GB duo are praying for a quiet Olympics

Team GB Doctors going to Olympics L-R Mike Loosemore & Paul Thawley
Team GB Doctors going to Olympics L-R Mike Loosemore & Paul Thawley

While British athletes will be trying to claim the media spotlight when the Olympic Games bursts into life this week, sports doctors and physios will be doing their utmost to avoid it.

Doctor Mike Loosemore and Paul Thawley of Elite Physical Medicine in Aylesbury are two such men who will play a key role behind the scenes in London over the next month.

Mike has been selected as a doctor for the Team GB boxing squad, while Paul will be leading a team of therapists for both the judo and badminton squads.

For both men it is their fourth Olympic cycle and the culmination of a four-year working process.

Mike said: “It’s fantastic to see the four years of work being put into practice.”

Both men agree the pressure is on especially with the added intensity of a home Games.

“You go to work and it’s like ‘200 days until the Olympics’. Everyone is making me aware the Olympics are taking place!” Mike said.

Paul added: “It’s very special to have it in our own country.”

For both men a quiet Games would mean a measure of success.

“I will be hoping to do absolutely nothing at the Olympics and just watch the medals come in,” joked Mike.

“You don’t want anything to do really. You just want to be there,” said Paul.

However, their wishes are unlikely to turn into reality given the intense level of performance and competition.

Paul admitted one of his toughest tasks has been battling to get some of the athletes he has been treating fit in time for the Games.

And he conceded some will not enter the Games of their lives in peak condition.

“To be honest it’s going to be a busy couple of weeks,” Paul said.

With more than three decades of experience between them, the pair understand the continuity athletes crave during the Olympics.

“They have known us for four or eight years,” said Paul.

“What they don’t like is change when they are nervous.”

The medal aspirations of many athletes could well rest in their hands.