The GB Wheelchair Basketball Team’s tore up the courts of Hamburg on Friday 24 August as they dominated their back-to-back semi-final games against formidable opponents Germany (Women) and Iran (Men).
In what is undoubtedly a pivotal moment in time for women’s team sports in the UK, the GB women’s wheelchair basketball squad is well and truly reinforcing the point for female Paralympic team sport at the 2018 World Championships in Hamburg. Their dominant 23 point win over Germany (60-37) secured the team its first ever medal game at the tournament; their highest placing to-date being 5th at the 2014 World Championships.
The GB men were quick to follow the women’s team to secure their gold medal game placing, punishing Iran with a 23pt advantage to deliver the win (86-63). Led by new Captain Phil Pratt the GB men’s team was determined to qualify for a gold medal game, having not seen one since 2002.
Both teams have made the elite of the wheelchair basketball world take note during the Championships; with the GB women seeing off both Paralympic Gold and Silver medallists (USA & Germany) and the GB men taking out Paralympic Silver medallist Spain in the semi-finals.
The young GB squads have made a name for themselves in Hamburg with their boundless energy on court, cohesive team synergy and strong defensive game. Alongside their notable point scorers Helen Freeman (31pts), Amy Conroy (12pts), Gregg Warburton (22pts) and George Bates (21pts) the GB teams are proving unstoppable.
Lisa Pearce, British Wheelchair Basketball’s new CEO has been courtside throughout the tournament and commented:
“These finals places for both teams are thoroughly deserved; our teams have trained long and hard for this Championships. They have committed their heart and soul to the sport and their team mates; each and every one of them has been single minded in working towards achieving a podium finish at this tournament. They have been driven in this ambition and absolutely assured that it was possible.
“The funding our Junior and Senior Performance Programmes receive from UK Sport and the National Lottery enable our staff and athletes to achieve the world-wide success as is now apparent. It also supports the development of our talent pathway – crucial to the long term success of the GB teams post Tokyo”.
Gold Medal Games:
GB Women: Netherlands v GB, Saturday 25 August 2018 // 7:15pm
GB Men: USA v GB, Sunday 26 August 2018 // 2:30pm
GB Teams results at 2018 World Championships: http://www.britishwheelchairbasketball.co.uk/gbwba/index.cfm/gb-teams/world-championships-2018/gb-schedule/
GB Team Standings at World Championships: https://iwbf.org/world-championships-past-results/
GB Men’s Semi-Final Stats (Iran v GB): http://www.fibalivestats.com/u/IWBFW/914850/
GB Women’s Semi-Final Stats (Germany v GB): http://www.fibalivestats.com/u/IWBFW/914843/