The GB women’s Wheelchair Basketball team are looking to avenge their fourth place finish at last year’s BT Paralympic World Cup, as they take on Canada, Germany and Japan in Manchester next month.
GB women’s head coach Garry Peel said, “We have a number of big competitions in the next couple of months that we are focussing on such as the U25’s World Championship, the BT Paralympic World Cup and the European Championships and at every step we are building a stronger team for London 2012. I’m really looking forward to this year’s BT Paralympic World Cup; it’s a local competition and the best teams in the world will be there, so it will ensure that it is a tough tournament and it is giving us the chance to bring in new players and test them at the highest level.”
Louise Sugden, one of GB’s leading players added, “The BT Paralympic World Cup is always a good opportunity to play in front of home crowd and to get people more excited at the prospect of the Paralympics in London 2012. Another good win over Japan is definitely our top target and a win over Canada would prove that we are really progressing and able to compete against the best in the world.”
Madeleine Thompson, who at age 16 is the youngest member of the team, said, “The BT Paralympic World Cup is my and most of the rest of the team’s favourite competition, as it is on home soil and the calibre of the teams is always very good giving us the type of competition we require.
“This tournament is a great one as it is a stepping stone for the GB team for the other tournaments coming up. With it being held in May means that the domestic basketball season has come to an end and it kick starts the focus being on GB.”
The confirmed GB team is:
The BT Paralympic World Cup is the largest annual international multi-sport competition in elite disability sport. BT is entering its third year as title sponsor, in a sponsorship which runs up to and includes the 2012 BT Paralympic World Cup.
Manchester has committed for the seventh consecutive year to hosting elite international athletes competing across Wheelchair Basketball, Athletics and Swimming. In addition, Boccia and Sitting Volleyball will be represented for the first time, with international matches staged during the competition.
photos Janos Schmidt