National Junior Wheelchair Basketball Finals
Paralympic hopefuls shine at The Lord’s Taverners National Junior Wheelchair Basketball Championships
The London 2012 Games and a sensational summer of sport may have now drawn to a close but the 19th-21st October saw the legacy of the Paralympics live on as the country’s top junior wheelchair basketball players battled it out to scoop the coveted The Lord’s Taverners National Junior Championships title.
Played over three days, the competition saw 19 regional squads over two age groups, Under 19’s and Under 15’s, compete to become National Champions.
Both age groups saw fierce competition but in the Under 19’s it was the North West who defeated Yorkshire 23 – 17 to defend their title and remain champions for the second year running. Whilst in the fight for Bronze it was the South West who convincingly defeated a combined Northern Ireland and Scottish team to take third place.
The Under 15’s final played host to a battle of the Midlands as the East Midlands attempted to defend their title against the West Midlands. However, this year it was the West Midlands who emerged victorious winning 19 -11.
The Lord’s Taverners National Junior Championships is an essential part of the development of wheelchair basketball providing the opportunity for young players across the UK to compete against each other.
Once again the 2012 Championships has seen the standard of the competition and junior athletes involved continue to increase in strength.
Tournament organiser and British Wheelchair Basketball’s Junior Development Officer, Tina Gordon said after the event, “This year proved to be another successful Championships and as our showcase event for junior wheelchair basketball it was a pleasure to see how far the tournament has come in the last five years.
“Although fiercely competitive the Championships also fosters great friendships between rival teams and provides the inspiration for many of our young players to go further to gain international honours.
“Congratulations to all the teams that took part, it was a great success and we could never have done it without them, their parents, coaches and supporters.
“I’d also like to thank The Lord’s Taverners – without them there would not be a Championships and their support is crucial to the development of the Junior Programme.”
Over the past 5 years The Lord’s Taverners have granted over £568K through The Disability Sports Appeal to fund its focussed junior development programme and has contributed hugely by working closely with the team at British Wheelchair Basketball – a partnership of which we are very proud. The Lord’s Taverners have built a strong reputation in the field of junior wheelchair sport and the legacy of the Appeal has laid the foundations for the charity’s future support of these enthusiastic and inspiring young wheelchair players.
We were delighted that two of our major supporters, Peter Hearn and Fiona Squire, attended the Championships at Stoke Mandeville and took part in the presentation ceremony. Both were highly impressed by the numbers of competitive young players who entertained us thoroughly throughout the day cheered on by their families – no better way to see the effect of their generous donations.
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