EBBW Vale table tennis ace Charlotte Carey turned 18 this week and she’s hoping to prolong the celebrations into next month by winning a medal at Glasgow 2014, writes Andrew Penman.
Carey was presented with a chocolate cake by Team Wales captain Aled Davies at the official Team Wales Commonwealth Games send-off on Wednesday.
And she can’t wait to take part in her second Games having competed at Delhi 2010 as a 14-year-old.
“It was a special way to spend my 18th birthday, that’s for sure,” she said.
“I didn’t expect the cake. That was a surprise but it was good.
“The send-off was been a reminder of how close it is really and we’re all looking forward to it now.”
Carey moved to Germany to take up table tennis full-time after her GCSEs in 2012 and she was pleased to meet up with her Wales teammates.
“Getting the kit has been great and it’s nice to see each other because we all live abroad now and don’t see a lot of each other,” she said.
“It’s come round fast and the whole team is really looking forward to going to Glasgow now.
“I think the fact that I went to Delhi last time will help me because it is a lot less daunting this time,” she added.
“Last time I was nervous and unsure about what was going on but this time I’m just excited and looking forward to competing.
“Delhi was daunting but everyone looked after me as the youngest member of the team. Glasgow is going to be slightly different to Delhi but I can’t wait.”
And she is confident of an improved performance compared to 2010.
“I want to be pushing towards the medals,” she said. “We’d like a top-six finish in the team event and the singles, doubles and mixed doubles is all about the draw really.
“I think we’ve all developed as players. Moving abroad has been a great experience for me, meeting new people and competing against different opponents can only improve you as a player.”