Getting down and dirty! British women's football team enjoy muddy bonding session as they prepare for biggest match of their lives when they open the Olympic Games
16:36 GMT, 12 July 2012
In exactly 13 days time, the British women's football team will officially open the London 2012 Olympics as they take on New Zealand in the first meeting in the three week-long Games.
This week, as their training schedule reached its peak, the players of Team GB took time out to let their hair down in a rare moment away from the pitch.
But true to form, relaxation for these world class athletes isn't about loafing around in front of the television.
Instead, they spent a rollicking afternoon dressed up in army fatigues and storming round a muddy army assault course in ten ton tanks.
Bonding: Team GB women's football squad during a team building exercise at Tankmania, Leicestershire
Not much of a day off for some, but
the players were beaming beneath their hard hats, despite the mud that
splattered their faces.
All 22 of Hope Powell’s Olympics
squad went on the team-building exercise at Tankmania, near their
Leicester training base, where they had the opportunity to drive an
Abbot self-propelled gun tank around the muddy course.
Team GB’s captain, Casey Stoney,
said: 'It was great fun, and all of the girls enjoyed it. It’s not the
usual battle we’re used to.
'The tanks were a little more fearsome than some of the forwards I’m used to facing, but just not as quick.'
Forging bonds: The 22 members of the squad were taking part in a team building exercise to help them bond ahead of the Games
Enjoying the ride: The girls took a turn in a Bedford MJ 4×4 Troop Carrying truck
Off duty: The squad had a rare moment of downtime away from the pitch
They've had a lot of rain in Leicestershire! The Tank Mania course was flooded with wet mud – making it all the more fun for the temporary troops
Getting down and dirty: The tank negotiated deep mud and puddles
IN THE SQUAD: OLYMPIC WOMEN'S FOOTBALL TEAM
Stephanie Houghton – born 23/4/1988, Durham.
Kim Little – born 29/6/1990, Aberdeen.
Claire Rafferty – born 11/1/1989, Orpington.
Alex Scott – born 14/10/1984, London.
Jill Scott – born 2/2/1987, Sunderland.
Kelly Smith – born 29/10/1978, Watford.
Casey Stoney – born 13/5/1982, Basildon.
Ellen White – born 9/5/1989, Aylesbury.
Rachel Yankey – born 1/11/1979, London.
Eniola Aluko – born 21/2/1987, Lagos.
Anita Asante – born 27/4/1985, London.
Karen Bardsley – born 14/10/1984, Santa Monica.
Sophie Bradley – born 20/10/1989, Nottingham.
Rachel Brown – born 2/7/1980, Burnley.
Karen Carney – born 1/8/1987, Birmingham.
Ifeoma Dieke – born 25/02/1981, Amherst.
Fara Williams – born 25/1/1984, Greenwich.
Rachel Williams – born 10/1/1988, Leicester.
Preparing for the biggest game of their lives: The Team GB football squad