Nanjing 2014: Beth Tweddle says Olympics amazing for GB teens

By Nick HopeBBC Olympic sports reporter
What is inside a Team GB kit bag?
2014 Youth Olympics
Venue: Nanjing, China Dates: 16-28 August 2014 Coverage: Daily highlights (09:00-10:00 and 16:00-17:00 BST from 17-28 August) on BBC Red Button; text reports and select medal-winning action on BBC Sport website and BBC News Channel. BBC One review 18:00 on 30 August

The Nanjing Youth Olympics will provide Team GB youngsters with an "amazing opportunity" to prepare for competing at the Rio and Toyko Games.

That is according to retired London Olympic medal-winning gymnast Beth Tweddle, who has mentored the squad.

The 33 athletes, aged 15-18, will compete in 14 of the 28 sports in China with the opening ceremony on Saturday.

"There's lots of distractions at multi-sport Games, with the athletes village and extra pressure," said Tweddle.

"If you can experience that when you're younger you get all of that giddiness out of the way and it makes it easier to focus next time."

Team GB 'ones to watch' in Nanjing
Muhammad Ali (boxing) - Not the type of athlete to be overawed by the achievements of his namesake, the 18-year-old is targeting Youth gold before Rio glory and a professional career.
Ellie Downie (gymnastics) - Vault gold and all-around bronze at the 2014 European juniors underlined the 15-year-old's potential to emulate elder sister Becky Downie - an Olympian and Commonwealth champion.
Abigail Stones (taekwondo) - The 15-year-old reigning world junior champion trains with Olympic gold medallist Jade Jones in Manchester and is a strong Nanjing medal prospect.

Nanjing is the third host of a Youth Olympics, following the inaugural summer Games of Singapore 2010 and the first winter sports edition in Innsbruck, Austria, two years later.

Great Britain won nine medals in Singapore, with Taekwondo fighter Jade Jones and gymnast Sam Oldham going on to secure gold and bronze respectively at London 2012.

However, Team GB chef de mission Sarah Winckless is keen to stress that unlike senior Olympics - where UK Sport set specific medal targets - there is no such expectation on the teenagers.

"We want them to come away having learned something about themselves," the former rowing world champion told BBC Sport.

"It will be challenging as they'll have to deal with jet-lag and the humid environment, but hopefully they can set a few personal bests."

There will be no British competitors in the high-profile sports of track and field, cycling and tennis, but swimming is the best represented discipline for GB - with eight athletes.

Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic facts
About 3,600 athletes from 204 nations will compete
All 28 summer Olympic sports will feature - across 222 events
Golf and rugby sevens feature for the first time at an Olympics ahead of their senior debut in Rio 2016
Sports that missed out on selection for the 2020 Olympics, such as roller skating, sport climbing and wushu, will be 'demonstrated'

Golf will make its first Olympic appearance since 1904, ahead of its senior return for Rio 2016, with Annabel Dimmock and Robert MacIntyre being Britain's first competitors since 1990.

"I think golf will be a great addition to the Olympics," Dimmock said.

"It will be particularly good for the women's side and really help it grow."

More than 3,500 athletes from 204 countries will compete in the Youth Olympics, which run from 16-28 August.

Team GB squad for Nanjing 2014:

Archery - Bryony Pitman, Bradley Denny; Boxing - Muhammad Ali, Peter McGrail, Viddal Riley; Canoeing - Paul Sunderland, Victoria Murray; Equestrian - Jake Saywell; Golf - Annabel Dimmock, Robert MacIntyre; Gymnastics - Ellie Downie, Giarnni Regini-Moran; Trampoline - Zachary Sheridan, Zainub Akbar; Judo - Peter Miles, Lulu Piovesana; Modern Pentathlon - Henry Choong, Francesca Summers; Rowing - Chris Lawrie, Anna Thornton; Sailing - Hanna Brant; Swimming - Martyn Walton, Duncan Scott, Miles Munro, Luke Greenbank, Charlotte Atkinson, Amelia Maughan, Jessica Fullalove, Georgina Evans; Taekwondo - Abigail Stones, Christian McNeish; Triathlon - Ben Dijkstra, Sian Rainsley.