- Date of Birth: 20 Jan 1987
- Weight Class: 48Kg
Yana Stadnik, 26, Manchester
Yana Stadnik has fallen in love. With Britain. So much so, she wants to settle here, and become a British citizen.
That means she wants to comepete at international tournaments for Britain for many years to come. And that is good news for GB Wrestling, given that she finished fifth at the recent World Championships in Denmark, and was one contest away from winning a bronze medal.
Yana arrived in the UK in February 2007. Born and raised in Ukraine, she came here initially to be a sparring partner - but liked it so much, she stayed.
"I love it here," she said. "I love Manchester, I love the lifestyle, and I really do want to settle here and become British.
"Everyone has made me so welcome, and what impressed me were the standards, which I can see improving all the time, and that is helping me."
Yana took up wrestling at 13, but it should be no surprise she chose this sport, because it is in the blood! Her father is a wrestling coach, and her brother, Andrei, will be known to some as a silver medalist at the Beijing Olympics, and the winner of a bronze at the World Championships in 2006.
"I have a sister who also wrestles, so as you can tell, I grew up with the sport," said Yana. "But in Ukraine it is a big sport, with a big history.
"When I first tried it I was good at it, I enjoyed it, and it went from there."
Yana's big ambition is to win a medal at the 2016 Olympic Games, and she will be delighted to be wearing GB colours. "To be honest, when I go to the mat, I am wrestling for myself, but as I say, I am very settled here in Britain, and I am very proud to represent Britain at international competitions.
"My family back home have been very supportive - they didn't mind me coming here in the first place, and they are pleased that I have settled here, and are always happy to see me win."
Yana has her own website (yanastadnik.com) and Twitter account (@yana2012)