Lima 2019: Colombia targets rugby gold

Wheelchair rugby team motivated after Worlds debut 30 Aug 2018
Colombia's Carlos Neme

Colombia's Carlos Neme

ⒸColombian Paralympic Committee
By Natalia Calderon and APC

Colombia are hopeful of winning their first title in wheelchair rugby at the Lima 2019 Parapan American Games following a solid display at August’s World Championships.

Led by captain Carlos Neme, the South American team finished 10th, with wins coming against Poland and New Zealand.

“We’ve worked hard for all the families and the people that have supported the team. We thank them very much,” said Neme.

With less than one year to go until Lima 2019, Colombia could prove to be a real threat to Canada and the USA’s chances of topping the podium.

“We need to continue working and taking part in preparatory events to get to Lima 2019 well-prepared and with the necessary experience to succeed,” added Neme.

“As athletes we always give the best of ourselves. Winning the gold medal would show that all the effort paid off.”

Three years ago, Colombia claimed bronze behind hosts Canada and the USA in Toronto.

“We already reached the podium at a Parapan American Games; now we want to take another step forward,” added Neme.

“Winning that medal was one of the best experiences in my life. It was so satisfying! Seeing the Colombian flag being raised was incredible. It was all thanks to our collective effort and sacrifice.”

Brazil, who Colombia beat in the bronze medal-game at Toronto 2015, will be another of the teams battling to finish among the top three.

“They are all strong, but we have been preparing physically and psychologically for the last three years in order to achieve a good result at the Parapan American Games.”