Women outnumber men on Team GB for 1st time

Team GB is set to contain more female than male athletes for the first time ever next summer, when the British Olympic Association (BOA) sends its biggest ever squad to Tokyo.

The greatest number of athletes ever to represent Great Britain at the Olympics was 371 during the 1992 games in Barcelona, a record that is expected to be broken next year with 378 competitors on Team GB.

Great Britain has already booked 77 quota places for next summer's games due to the recent qualifications of the men's and women's rugby sevens squads, as well as the women's football team. The latter's spot was guaranteed as a result of the Lionesses finishing fourth at the World Cup in France last month.

Those qualifications plus existing plans mean the gender split on the team is expected to be 191 women to 187 men.

BOA chef de mission Mark England told reporters at the Bisham Abbey Sports Centre: "To use a cricket analogy, we've got runs on the board in terms of athletes already qualified for Tokyo. We're up to nearly 80 now and we're shooting for about 380.

"We are on the cusp of securing more women [than men] in the British Olympic team for the first time ever."

Penny Briscoe, British Paralympic Association chef de mission, added that the situation should be similar for ParalympicsGB in Tokyo. The team is expected to comprise 250 athletes, "45 to 48 percent" of whom should be female, according to Briscoe.

That proportion would mark the highest ever for female competitors on ParalympicsGB.