What to watch: September 2015

Five World Championships events in para-sport will be scattered throughout this month, along with four regional Championships. 02 Sep 2015
Two athletes doing taekwondo

Taekwondo will be included in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Programme for the first time.

ⒸWorld Taekwondo Federation

International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) European Wheelchair Basketball Championships (28 August – 6 September)

Defending women’s champion the Netherlands look to retain their title. But London 2012 Paralympic champions Germany are seeking revenge, having given up their reign of four straight European titles to the Dutch with a 57-56 loss in 2013.

The men’s 2013 European championship final featured a similar tight matchup between Great Britain and Turkey, with the British holding on 59-57 for the crown. Both, along with Spain, are expected to contend for gold in Worcester, Great Britain.

World Rowing Championships (31 August – 6 September)

A record 70 para-rowing boats hit the waters at Aiguebelette, France, competing in four medal events. Among the races to watch is the AS women’s singles sculls, which pits Israel’s Moran Samuel against Norway’s defending world champion Birgit Skarstein.

Badminton World Federation (BWF) Para-Badminton World Championships (8-13 September)

The first World Championships are held this month at Stoke Mandeville Stadium, Great Britain. More than 250 athletes from 42 countries will battle in 21 medal events, with competition expected to rise with the sport being added to the Paralympic programme for Tokyo 2020. Norway’s Helle Sofie Sagoy, Poland’s Bartlomiej Mroz and South Korea’s Jung-Jun Kim are ones to watch. More information on the Para-Badminton World Championships can be found on BWF’s website.

US Open (11-13 September); US Open USTA Wheelchair Tennis Championships (31 August-6 September)

The final Grand Slam of the wheelchair tennis season wraps up in New York, USA, where eight of the top women and men’s singles players, and four of the top quads players will commence.

Also earlier this month, the USTA Wheelchair Tennis Championships – a Super Series event – is also being held in St. Louis, USA.

World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) World Para-Taekwondo Championships (15-17 September)

The number of athletes and participating countries is expected to rise at sixth edition of the Para Taekwondo World Championships, which will take place in Samsun, Turkey. The sport was introduced as a full member of the IPC this year and will be added to the Paralympic programme for Tokyo 2020.

International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Triathlon Grand Final (15-20 September); Edmonton ITU World Para-Triathlon Event (5-6 September)

As the World Para-Triathlon Event (WPE) series wraps up in Edmonton, Canada, the top para-triathletes around the world will turn their focus to the Grand Final in Chicago, USA. One of the most competitive classes to watch is the men’s PT4, where Germany’s Martin Schulz has been unstoppable throughout the WPE series. Great Britain dominate the women’s equivalent, led by two-time Paralympic swimmer Lauren Steadman, along with Faye McClelland and Clare Cunningham. The USA’s Hailey Danisewicz will look to take back her PT2 world title on home soil.

International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation (IWAS) Wheelchair Fencing World Championships (17-24 September)

The top wheelchair fencers will vie for the world title when the competition takes place in Eger, Hungary. Home favourites Richard Osvath, Zsuzsanna Krajnyak and Eva Hajmasi will look to make their marks, while Italian youngster Beatrice Vio looks to continue her rise in the sport.

International Wheelchair Rugby Federation (IWRF) 2015 European Division A Championships (13-20 September)

The top eight teams from European region will take the courts in Pajulahti, Finland, for the crown. Great Britain, Denmark and Sweden are in the top mix, with only the top two able to secure a place at Rio 2016. For more information on the Wheelchair Rugby European Championships, visit the event website.

International Equestrian Federation (FEI) European Para-Dressage Championships (17-20 September)

Countries have been announcing the top riders they will send to Deauville, France, with a shot at the regional crown. Amongst the teams in place are the Netherlands, Belgium, Finland and Russia.

Men’s Sitting Volleyball European Championships (30 September – 8 October); World ParaVolley World Club Cup (18-25 September)

London 2012 Paralympic champions Bosnia and Herzegovina are favourites for the European crown, but Paralympic bronze medallists Germany will hope home court will give them the edge in Warendorf.

2015 Korea Para-Table Tennis Open (3-6 September); Czech Open 2015 (17-19 September)

South Korea’s Young-gun Kim is among those to watch this month in the sport. The top-ranked athlete in the men’s class 4 will compete on home soil in Ulsan.

IPC Wheelchair Dance Sport World Cup (3-7 September)

About 135 athletes from 17 countries will compete at the event in St. Petersburg, Russia, with Hungary making their first appearance in the sport. The event is one of only two remaining opportunities to compete ahead of the World Championships, taking place in Rome, Italy, in November.

Rio 2016 Para-Canoe Test Event (4-6 September)

The sport’s Paralympic test event just follows the World Championships, which wrapped up last month in Milan, Italy. Expect recently crowned world champions, such as Austria’s Markus Mendy Swoboda, to test the waters.

IPC Shooting World Cup (15-19 September)

The World Cup in Sydney, Australia, is the second opportunity this year for countries to earn qualification spots toward Rio 2016. More than 150 athletes across 34 countries will take part.

Ecuador 2015 INAS Global Games (20-27 September)

The world’s largest elite sporting event for athletes with an intellectual disability will be held for the first time in South America at Quito, Ecuador. About 35 countries are expected to be represented and compete across nine sports.