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LSBU’s Elite Sports Programme supports student’s Olympic dream

London South Bank University elite athlete Ehsan Miri's dream becomes a reality as he prepares to compete in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games
29 January 2015

Professional fencer and PhD student at London South Bank University (LSBU), Ehsan Miri, is planning on taking his fencing career to the next level by competing in the 2016 Olympic Games with the help of LSBU's Elite Sports Programme

Ehsan has used his raw talent – nurtured by the Elite Sports Programme – to shine at a range of international competitions leading him to notch up an impressive international 22 titles.

The Elite Sports Programme is run by the Academy of Sport at LSBU and supports talented sportsmen and women balance their sporting, academic and personal lives. The programme offers a wide range of help including financial and academic support, making it possible for students to complete their education and succeed in their sport at a high level. The programme has become one of the largest for a UK University.

Ehsan was encouraged to take up fencing when he was just 11 years old after seeing his brother's consistent success in international tournaments. He has since worked with top coaches from across the globe and has been selected to sign a two year contract as a professional athlete with the Qatar National Olympic Committee – the only fencer in the world to do so.

He has had the opportunity to compete in a range of international competitions  and is now planning to train for the 2016 Olympics upon completion of his PhD in Sustainable Design and Engineering at LSBU.  

Ehsan added yet another medal to his growing collection after winning silver at the Cambridge International Fencing Tournament earlier this month. This is the second consecutive year that Ehsan has won a top spot at the annual tournament, giving him the confidence and drive to compete in higher level competitions.

Ehsan said: "It has been incredibly challenging training alongside studying for my PhD and I am grateful for the support I have received from the Sports Department at LSBU during my time here. Winning another medal in an international competition means a lot to me as I have taken a 10 year break from my career as professional fencer to concentrate my studies, so it's great to know I still have a shot to compete in even more prestigious competitions like the Olympics."

Other athletes benefiting from LSBU's Elite Sport Programme include Alexandra Lara and Ioannis Timagenis who are both members of the Great Britain and Greece national teams respectively in the sport of taekwondo.