Commonwealth Games coverage
Published: 17 July 2014
Written by: Luke Webber
Video: Simon Powers
Wales’ Lewis Oliva is relishing the opportunity to compete in his second Commonwealth Games, following a faster than expected recovery from injury.
The sprinter who rides as part of the Great Britain Cycling Team originally planned to miss the Games as he completed his rehabilitation.
But having completed a successful return to racing ahead of schedule Oliva became available for selection, took the opportunity and hopes to be further rewarded for his patience.
“In recent months the rehab has gone so well I can deliver some good performances” Oliva concluded, before travelling to Glasgow.
“We’ve seen a big step up from myself in terms of competition and recent training performances both on the track here in Manchester and on the concrete tracks in Germany where I’ve been based the last month or so.
“It’s a pretty exciting time, I’ve been doing personal bests on the track and in the gym so I can’t really ask for much more.”
Despite an impending Games experience, Oliva retains the ability to view the Commonwealth Games as the first in a line of events that will contribute to his selection for Rio 2016.
“Coming back from injury recently it’s quite key that I look beyond the Commonwealth Games and not as an end in itself. So I’m going to train on through the Commonwealth Games and give myself some markers, whether it be through times or race results.
“For me the flying 200m is the only true marker where I can see where we’ve been and how far we’ve come with the recent rehabilitation and in addition to that then you’ve got the results of the competition itself so they’ll obviously stand its own test.”
And with just two years until Rio 2016, the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome will host a rare opportunity for all British sprinters, ultimately competing for a chance to ride at the next Olympic Games – something Oliva is aware of.
“It’s only really the national championships where you get that sort of exposure to race against the guys you compete with and essentially competing for that team sprint spot come Olympics in a couple of years’ time.
"So it’s good to have everybody given the opportunity to race for their home nations if you like, at the same competition and it should make for a good race.”