Invictus Games: Queen 'deeply moved'

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Media captionGames organiser Prince Harry urged the crowd to create a Mexican wave at the closing ceremony

The Queen has told competitors in the Invictus Games she has been "deeply moved by your courage, determination and talent".

In a statement read out by organiser Prince Harry at the closing ceremony, she said competitors had "overcome great adversity just to take part".

The prince added that those who had taken part had shown their "unconquerable" character.

Wounded servicemen and women from 13 countries took part in the games.

Prince Harry read out a statement from the Queen to crowds at a concert in London's Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to mark the end of the games.

'Enormous challenges'

"Prince Philip and I send our heartfelt congratulations to the organisers and supporters of this competition and most importantly to you men and women of the armed forces who have overcome great adversity just to take part in these Games," the Queen said.

"As I have followed the competition over the past four days, I have been deeply moved by your courage, determination and talent.

"All of you have used the power of sport to enhance your own recovery and to raise wider awareness of the enormous challenges faced by wounded veterans."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Wounded serviceman and women from 13 countries took part in the games, organised by Prince Harry
Image copyright PA
Image caption Members of the UK team took to the stage during the closing concert
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Foo Fighters singer Dave Grohl hugged Prince Harry before the band performed

The Queen said the success of the games could "be measured not by medals won but by the renewed sense of purpose and confidence in your abilities that you have gained".

She added: "I send my warmest good wishes and congratulations to you all."

The concert, in front of a sell-out crowd of 26,000, featured acts including rock bands Foo Fighters and Kaiser Chiefs.

Prince Harry told the crowd the games had shown "the very best of the human spirit".

"These games have been about seeing guys sprinting for the finish line and then turning round to clap the last man in.

"They have been about team-mates choosing to cross the line together, not wanting to come second, but not wanting the other guys too either," he said.

'Huge achievement'

The games featured more than 400 competitors in track and field events and disciplines including cycling and indoor rowing.

Teams have travelled from the US, Afghanistan, New Zealand and across Europe to take part in events at the Olympic Park and Lee Valley Athletics Centre in London.

Invictus Games in numbers

  • More than 400 competitors
  • A 130-strong British team
  • 13 countries represented
  • Four days of competition
  • Competitions in nine adaptive sports: Athletics, swimming, powerlifting, indoor rowing, sitting volleyball, road cycling, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby and archery
  • Five venues, including those used during the 2012 London Olympic Games

See here for more coverage of the inaugural games

Prime Minister David Cameron, meanwhile, has said the games could become a permanent fixture.

"What's exciting is that other countries are now coming forward and saying, 'We would like to host an Invictus Games as well,'" he told Forces TV.

"And I think there's every chance that this can become a real institution and a huge achievement for Prince Harry."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Road cycling is one of the sports featured in the games
Image copyright PA
Image caption Prince Harry based the event on the Warrior Games in the US
Image copyright Reuters
Image caption The prince said the US was interested hosting the games in 2016 and Canada in 2017

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