A powerful Great Britain men’s Wheelchair Basketball team has been selected to defend their BT Paralympic World Cup title in Manchester next month, ahead of the European Championships in Israel in September.
The reigning champions will be looking to contest the title on home turf as they face Paralympic silver medallists Canada, World Silver medallists France and emerging nation Brazil in the annual round robin competition.
The team of twelve includes eight of the men who competed at the Paralympic Games in Beijing, where GB won the bronze medal and with just a year to go until the Paralympic Games in London the BT Paralympic World Cup will be a crucial test for the squad.
GB Head Coach Murray Treseder said, “The team has been selected following an intensive couple of weeks training. From this we have named a very strong team ahead of the BT Paralympic World Cup, as we see this as a vital start to our preparation for the European Championships in Israel this September.”
“The calibre of the teams in Europe is extremely high, with hardly anything separating the countries. This is why it is imperative that we play against tough countries such as France, Canada and Brazil at the BT Paralympic World Cup, to make sure the players have experienced and played at the high standard that will be expected of them and perform to the best of their ability,” he added.
Jon Pollock, a key player for GB who has competed in three Paralympic Games, said, “I really enjoy the BT Paralympic World Cup; it is close to home so I always have a great crowd behind me. With just over a year to go until the London Paralympics, it is great to have all the team back from abroad, we have been training really hard and are all focused on the year ahead.”
Simon Munn, who is aiming for his sixth Paralympic Games in London, added, “I can’t wait for the BT Paralympic World Cup; I love this tournament. There is always a great atmosphere and as defending champions we are excited to be back to defend our title.”
The confirmed 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.