Wheelchair basketball teams stay loose for Rio

Here is a brief rundown of the tournaments taking place ahead of September’s Paralympic Games. 17 Jun 2016
Darlene Hunter of USA

Darlene Hunter of USA battles the Australian wheelchair basketball team Semi Final match at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

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By Laurie Lawira | For the IPC

The qualification period for wheelchair basketball is long done. All that is left – besides nations naming their rosters – is getting in some warm-up games before September. Many nations will be doing just that in the coming months.

Here are some of the wheelchair basketball tournaments that teams will be using to prepare for Rio:

Basket Fauteuil – Tournoi International Feminin

All four European women’s teams are in Lyon, France, until Saturday (18 June) for the Basket Fauteuil – Tournoi International Feminin. Reigning Paralympic and European champion Germany will be the team to beat, and will also clash with the Netherlands, Great Britain and host France.

More information can be found on the tournament’s Facebook page.

International Friendly in Lake Placid

The US women’s wheelchair basketball team will head to Lake Placid, New York, USA for an International Friendly tournament from 22-26 June. The USA will go in with confidence after coming off a 6-0 win from a three day round-robin friendly tournament at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, keeping a perfect record against Paralympic qualifiers China, Brazil and Canada.

In what was a dominant display, the hosts outscored their competitors 464 to 272 and finished the event with a convincing 73-33 win over Brazil. Desiree Miller who has been selected for her second Paralympics led the charge with a double-double, 22 points and 10 rebounds.

Complete results from the International Friendly in Colorado Springs can be found on the US National Wheelchair Basketball Association’s website.

International Wheelchair Basketball Tournament in Walbrzych City

The Netherlands and Spain’s men’s wheelchair basketball teams will get competition in ahead of Rio in a tournament from Friday to Saturday (17-18 June) in Poland. They will face Poland and Italy in a series of round-robin games. The tournament will be live streamed on www.TVCOM.pl.

World Super Cup

The USA will travel to Frankfurt, Germany, in another opportunity to flex their muscles against top European sides, Germany and the Netherlands, in the World Super Cup from 13-18 July.

The hosts are the defending Paralympic gold medallists, while the Netherlands picked up bronze behind Australia in London 2012. The USA will then go into a final camp at Colorado Springs prior to September’s Games.

More information on the World Super Cup can be found on the event Facebook page.

Continental Clash

Leicester City, Great Britain, will host the top men’s wheelchair basketball teams from around the world from 2-5 July.

Great Britain will throw their all at London 2012 gold medallist Canada; 2014 world champions Australia; Japan and the Netherlands.

The host nation will be looking to improve on their second place finish from May’s Toronto Challenge.

More information on the 2016 Continental Clash can be found on the event website.