The MLA added:
"The success of Team Northern Ireland at the Commonwealth Games is a fitting tribute to the skill, sacrifice and dedication of all the athletes who represented Team NI in Birmingham. Team NI won a record eighteen medals at the games, including seven gold medals, seven silver and four bronze medals. Our golden heroes included swimming sensation Bethany Firth who continues to excel in the pool, and five of our boxers, Dylan Eagleson, Jude Gallagher, Aidan Walsh, Michaela Walsh and Amy Broadhurst. The lawn bowls men’s team also brought home the gold medal, bringing Team NI’s gold medal total to a sensational record seven.
This is a remarkable achievement for all the competitors, and it is also a reward for the coaches who have worked so hard working to train the athletes within their various sporting fields over many years. We can be very proud of every member of Team NI who competed at these very competitive games, representing Northern Ireland with real distinction. It is imperative that the Communities Minister adequately recognises the success of our local athletes and ensures that they are given a reception worthy of their success, and I have written to her asking her to host a reception for Team NI. It is important that we build on this success, and ensure proper investment to improve sporting facilities right across our country at every level, to build on this success and inspire future generations.
Our country continues to produce real sporting talent on the world stage, and we have punched above our weight in so many fields of sport over many years, right from Dame Mary Peters, George Best, Joey Dunlop, Rory McIlroy and Jonathan Rea to name but a few who have enjoyed victory on the global stage.”