A fast, furious and noisy seven nations took to the courts today in the preliminary rounds of Wheelchair Basketball. The bleachers full of fellow competitors as they rallied behind their teams.
Nine matches were played across the two pools with gold (UK) and silver (USA) medallists from 2014 Invictus Games going into Pool A and Pool B respectively.
Pool A had 2014 Gold medallists UK, New Zealand and the Netherlands. Whilst Pool B had Silver medallist USA with Australia, France and Denmark. Each nation plays each other in their pool.
Some standout moments in the matches which are two 8 minute halves. The USA and UK team remain undefeated both going through to the semi finals which will take place on Thursday 12 May.
The Netherland team in their stand out orange uniforms are also through to the semi finals and easily win the award for most organised spectators with a resounding Hol-land, Hol-land, Hol-land at both half time and full time.
The Danish team clung on to make the fourth team into the semi’s on Thursday.
A truly valiant effort from the Kiwis who managed to stem the Dutch goals in the second half of their match against them, stopping them scoring at all in the second half and then a fight to the finish with the highly energetic French which saw the New Zealand team narrowly defeated in extra time of the playoffs settling in their final position of 6th place.
Australia, despite the cries of ozzie, ozzie, ozzie, oy, oy, oy from their cheer squad, found themselves in a ‘typical ANZAC clash’ against New Zealand in the playoffs. Australian Team Captain Adrian Rolfe seemed content with his team’s performance as they headed to the Wheelchair Rugby preliminaries where many of them were competing later that afternoon. “We have an infant team and have only practiced as a team for about 11 hours as we all live so far away from each other. It has been a brilliant experience and we will take a lot away from the matches we have played. Everyone in the 40 strong team is entered in to at least one other sport so we will focus on those now.
Sadly we have to bid a fond farewell to Australia, New Zealand and France but look forward to seeing them at Sunday’s Opening Ceremony as well as court, track and pool side as they compete in other sports over the coming week.
Please check the results section of the website for official final scores.
May 12, 2016
• Wheelchair Basketball Semi Finals: 10:30 a.m. – 12: 30
• Wheelchair Basketball Gold & Bronze Medal Matches: 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. EST