Home' Army News : June 29th 2017 Contents June 29, 2017
Heading to Toronto
2017 Invictus Games team announced in Canberra
Cpl Mark Doran
TEN Army members have been
named in the team of 43 athletes
to represent Australia at the 2017
The combined team of 18 serv-
ing and 25 former ADF members was
announced at Parliament House in
Canberra on June 21.
The ADF and RSL are support-
ing the team to compete at the games
in Toronto, Canada from September
A final selection training camp was
held at the Sydney Academy of Sport
and Recreation from June 4-10, follow-
ing two other camps at the Australian
Institute of Sport earlier this year.
A squad of 53 athletes was selected
for the training squad following the tri-
als earlier in the year and reduced to a
team of 43 to compete in Toronto.
Athletes met NSW Governor Gen
David Hurley (retd) when he visited
the training camp and participated in a
game of wheelchair rugby.
During the launch of the 2018
Invictus Games at Admiralty House on
June 7, the squad members met Games
founder Prince Harry, Governor-
General Gen Sir Peter Cosgrove (Retd)
and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Prince Harry visited the swimming
squad on the last day of the training
Defence Personnel Minister Dan
Tehan congratulated the team members
and introduced the co-captains, Capt
Emma Kadziolka, of 2GHB, and Sgt
Peter Rudland, of 2 Cdo Regt.
Mr Tehan said the hard work and
dedication displayed by all of the ath-
letes throughout the rigorous selection
process was commendable.
“While not all training squad
members will participate in the 2017
Invictus Games, the support of all
Australians is with them in achieving
their goals of representing their country
at the 2018 Invictus Games,” he said.
“The fighting spirit displayed by all
of our athletes is a reflection of the
qualities the Invictus Games showcases
June 21 was a day of mixed emo-
tions for Sgt Rudland.
It was the seventh anniversary of
the Black Hawk helicopter crash in
Afghanistan in 2010 that killed three
Australian soldiers and left him
The accident left him with a
traumatic brain injury and severe inju-
ries to his legs, pelvis, arms, back,
shoulders and face.
Sgt Rudland said it was a humbling
experience to be chosen as a co-captain
with Capt Kadziolka.
“Seven years ago I thought my
career was over and my life would
change for the worse,” he said.
“It did change, but it changed for the
“I thought I wouldn’t be as good as
I was before, but I found I’m actually a
better person now.”
Sgt Rudland said the Australian
team was confident and looked forward
to competing in Toronto.
“We have more training camps to
attend before the Invictus Games and
plan to peak as athletes when the time
is right,” he said.
“An important role as co-captain
will be to be there for everybody, across
the good times and bad.
“The athletes have a variety of
physical and psychological injuries
or illnesses and I want to ensure they
are supported and everybody gets help
when they need it.”
Defence Minister Marise Payne con-
gratulated the athletes for making it
through the competitive selection pro-
cess and said every Australian would
be behind them as they competed in
“It’s going to be absolutely fabu-
lous,” she said.
“There have been months of prepa-
ration and it’s an extraordinary com-
mitment to come from being wounded,
injured or ill and try to become part of
the Invictus Games team.
“We ask an enormous amount of our
servicemen and women and these 43
people are giving this back in training
to be part of the team in Toronto.
“I’m immensely proud of the hard
work, determination and team spirit
they are going to display for them-
selves, their service and Australia.”
The 2017 Invictus Games will host
more than 550 athletes from 17 nations,
who have become wounded, injured or
ill during their service, in a celebration
of tenacity and courage.
The games are an initiative of Prince
Harry and is an international adaptive
sport competition using the power of
sport to motivate recovery, support
rehabilitation and generate a wider
understanding of the sacrifices made
by the men and women who serve their
Athletes will have the opportunity
to compete in a range of adaptive sports
including wheelchair basketball, wheel-
chair rugby, wheelchair tennis, archery,
athletics, indoor rowing, powerlifting,
road cycling, sitting volleyball, swim-
ming and, new to the 2017 games, golf.
More information about the Invictus Games,
including the full list of team members, their
biographies and images, is available at
Pte Danielle Close,
LCpl Samantha Gould,
Capt Emma Kadziolka,
Sig Kristin Lane,
Sgt Graeme Marshall,
Spr Curtis McGrath,
Cpl Sonya Newman,
Sgt Peter Rudland,
2 Cdo Regt
LCpl Gary Wilson,
2 Cdo Regt
NSW Governor Gen David Hurley (with the ball) joins 2017 Invictus Games t
raining squad athletes, including Spr Curtis McGrath (second from right) for a
game of wheelchair rugby at the Sydney Academy of Sport and Recreation.
Photos: Cpl Mark Doran
Cpl Mark Doran
THE “Invictus spirit” has lifted
nursing officer Capt Emma
Kadziolka, of 2GHB, from the
shock of a cancer diagnosis to
selection as co-captain of the
After months of medical tests,
Capt Kadziolka was diagnosed
with a stage-two glioma, an
inoperable brain tumour, in
November last year.
“It’s malignant, so it meant
coming to terms with cancer at
age 28,” she said.
“Psychologically, it was difficult
to accept, but I was encouraged
by my friends and doctor to apply
for a spot on the Invictus Games
team. They recognised I needed
another support network and
something to work towards to
keep me focused. The Invictus
spirit did that.”
Capt Kadziolka is modest
about her courage and fighting
spirit, but said the dedication to
her training kept her busy and
distracted her from her health
“Highlights have been
the people I’ve met and the
camaraderie and morale of the
team as we work towards Toronto
and the games in Sydney next
year,” she said.
“I now have a huge support
network of people I can call on
who have experienced similar
journeys in their recovery.”
Capt Kadziolka said the
opportunity to use sport as a
way to deal with her illness was
an important step for her mental
“It’s been great to get fit and
be healthy,” she said.
“Sport plays a huge part in
maintaining my mental health and
physical fitness, enabling me to
deal with the inevitable eventual
Capt Kadziolka said her
training schedule for the past
six months has been busy.
“I’m competing in sitting
volleyball, indoor rowing and am
part of the athletics team for shot
put and discus,” she said.
“My primary sport is indoor
rowing. Our coach created a
training program, which included
three sessions a week where we
needed to send him the results,
combined with general fitness,
volleyball skills and throwing
“Some of us have also been
attending training sessions with a
rowing club in Brisbane.”
Capt Kadziolka said it was
a challenge to fit it all in but the
biggest challenge was in her
“Sometimes I wake up and
don’t want to work or train,” she
“It’s not as though I feel sorry
for myself. The reality of it all just
hits sometimes, making finding
the motivation difficult.
“This is why Invictus is good.
It has given me a push over the
speed bumps towards an end
“I don’t want to let my team-
Strength of mateship shines through
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