Boris gives his trademark thumbs-up and poses for selfies during Paralympics homecoming at Wembley after Team GB came second on Tokyo games
Boris Johnson gave his trademark thumbs-up and posed for photos with superstar cyclist Dame Sarah Storey, fencer Piers Gilliver and swimmer Maisie Summers-Newton at a Paralympics homecoming after Britain came second at the Tokyo Games.
The Prime Minister posed for selfies, shook hands with the Team GB athletes and even made some of them chuckle during a meet-and-greet at Wembley Arena this afternoon ahead of a mega-concert to celebrate their astonishing successes.
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The Paralympics came to an end last Sunday in a colourful ceremony at the National Stadium overseen by Japan's Crown Prince Akishino, the brother of Emperor Naruhito. Team GB came second behind China, taking home 41 gold, 38 silver and 45 bronze medals.
The Olympics, which preceded the Paralympics' 13-day run, closed almost a month ago.
Paying tribute to the athletes, the Queen said: 'I offer my warm congratulations to Paralympic athletes from Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and indeed to the athletes of all Commonwealth countries, on their enormous success at the Tokyo Games.
'The commitment, dedication and adaptability shown by you, and your support teams, during the exceptional circumstances of the last 18 months has been inspirational.
'Your performances have lifted the nation and your triumphs been celebrated by us all. I send my very best wishes to all those who have contributed to the success of these memorable Games.'
Boccia champion David Smith led the handful of British athletes still in Tokyo last Sunday for the closing ceremony.
Sprinter Thomas Young, cyclist Benjamin Watson and swimmers Maisie Summers-Newton and Reece Dunn were among the emerging talent to burst on to the scene to take gold, with 56 British debutants claiming medals.
The games have been like none other after they were postponed for a year due to the coronavirus pandemic. No fans were permitted to attend the games, save for a few thousands at outlying venues away from Tokyo.
Only a few thousand school children were allowed in to some Paralympic venues.
Athletes were frequently tested for the virus and kept in a social bubble, which kept the virus largely at bay, though cases surged among the Japanese population, which is now almost 50 per cent vaccinated.
'There were many times when we thought these games could not happen,' Andrew Parsons, president of the International Paralympic Committee, said on Sunday. 'There were many sleepless nights.'
Seiko Hashimoto, the President of the Tokyo Organising Committee added: 'I believe that we have reached the end of games without any major problems.'
A record number of athletes - 4,405 - took part in the games, include two from Afghanistan who arrived in the capital several days late after fleeing Kabul.
Speaking to the Associated Press, Olympic historian David Wallechinsky said: 'The Tokyo Games were a model of efficiency and friendliness.
'If it hadn't been for the Covid-related difficulties, these would be right at or near the top of the best-organized of the 19 Olympics - Summer and Winter - I have attended.'