A Pembrokeshire powerlifter, swimmer, discus thrower and cyclist is home from representing the UK, having achieved personal bests in all his events during an emotional Invictus Games.

Ian Fisher began training for the games after being told by an army physio that if he did not change his ways, he would not live to see his 50th birthday or watch his three kids grow up.

The former 14 Signals staff sergeant, who has served in Iraq, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland, Kosovo and Bosnia had ended up in physio after losing feeling in his right leg and having to have spinal surgery due to a prolapsed disc.

“My physio was selected as the captain for the 2017 Invictus Games and chatting to him gave me a goal to aim for with my rehab,” said Ian.

He began to enjoy cycling and as part of his recovery successfully completed the Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Pembrokeshire. He then applied for the Invictus games and was successful in the 2019 trials which should have seen him representing Team UK in The Hague 2020.

After two postponements due to Covid the games were eventually held this year. For Ian they were an emotional event on many levels.

“The physical and mental aspects of the games were a drain on me,” he said.

“I don’t think that there was a day out there that I did not cry, either with pride with what Team UK and all the other participating countries could do supporting each other, or through the pain that I had during and after each event.”

Despite the pain he suffered, Ian achieved personal bests in all the events he entered.

“Wearing the union flag on my chest again gave me a great sense of pride,” he said. “Although I didn’t bring back any medals, I did get personal bests in everything I entered and I saw the pride and joy in my wife and kids’ eyes seeing me do something and enjoying participating again.

“Who would have thought five years ago that I would be representing the UK at a sporting event?”

Ian would like to inspire other injured service personnel to go out and try something that they wouldn’t necessarily think that they can do.

He has also applied to cycle up Mont Blanc this July and says he will continue powerlifting as it helps with stabilisation of his back.

“My thanks go out to my family and friends for supporting me and my recovery,” he said. “And to all the coaches and staff who have given their time and support to get the best out of me.

“Everything is possible, with adaptive sports you can perform on a level playing field and give it your all.”