LAUREN Price was given what she described as an “insane” reception on her return to Ystrad Mynach following last month’s gold medal-winning exploits at Tokyo 2020.

Not far from where the Welsh boxer lives with nan Linda is the family home of a teenager who also has ambitions of shining on the Olympic stage.

Teenager Charlotte Harris took a liking to ice hockey following a visit to her primary school by the Cardiff Devils.

She joined inline hockey club Caerphilly Comets soon after and then moved onto the ice, before gaining a place at the Ontario Hockey Academy in Canada aged just 15.

Living with close friends of her family in Cornwall, a city slap bang on the US border, and having younger brother Joseph for company, the 17-year-old has grown accustomed to Canadian life.

But, as you would expect, she loves coming back to her hometown and spending time with mum Melanie, dad Geraint and younger brother Alexander.

After Covid-19 travel restrictions prevented her from flying home for Christmas, the youngster is enjoying an extended stay in Wales.

And during her long overdue visit, Harris discovered she had been named in the Great Britain party for this week's Winter Olympics qualifiers in Nottingham.

She is set to make her senior international debut when Britain take on Iceland today, before games against South Korea and Slovenia.

The winners of the group will then go on to the final qualification tournament in November, with a place at Beijing 2022 up for grabs.

History would be made if Harris and her teammates did make it to China as Britain have never qualified for the Olympics since the sport was introduced for women at Nagano in 1998.

Harris is one of five new faces in the GB squad alongside fellow forwards Chamonix Jackson and Isabell Whiteley, netminder Ella Howard and defender Ellie Wakeling.

“I’ve always wanted to go to the Olympics and now I’ve got a chance,” she said.

“We’ve got a really good team – and the reserves are great players as well – and as long as we work together and work hard then I think we can do well in the qualifiers.

“Hopefully I can get to the Olympics with this team, whether it’s next year or another four years down the line.”

Harris has some previous experience of playing at major championships.

In the summer of 2015, she was part of the GB U10s roller hockey squad that competed in the AAU Junior Olympic Games and FIRS Youth World Cup in California.

“It was an amazing experience,” she added. “I had to go through trials for that and then the best got picked.

“There wasn’t an athletes’ village because we were all so young, but every team stayed in the same hotel and you’d see everyone else there.

“We could have done better but came fourth and really enjoyed the event – it gave me a taste of what the Olympics could be like.”

Harris will soon be entering the final year of school, after which she is going to continue her studies and ice hockey career at university.

While she is now immersed in the North American ways, there are plenty of things the teenager misses about Wales.

“Apart from my family, I probably miss the food the most when I go back to Canada,” she said. “My dad likes to cook and he makes a good stir fry.

“I’ve also got a sweet tooth and the chocolate over here is so much better than over there.

“My mum always sends me sweets and most of them are eaten by my friends.

“My boyfriend Landry will come from Texas and end up going back with about 40 bags of chocolate and sweets.”

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