Sunday 23 October 2016

Paralympian wheels of steel have Rio mission in Finland

Ireland's wheelchair rugby team have qualified for September's European Championships A finals in Finland where places at the Rio Paralympics go to the top two.

Playing at the European B division championships in Prague last month, the Irish caused a major shock by making the final. They had come into the tournament ranked No 23, but beat Italy and Austria in their pool matches and then Switzerland in the semi-final.

In the final, they faced France who had already beaten them in the pool stages, and again proved marginally too strong.

Special awards at the tournament went to captain Alan Lynch as most valuable player and to John McCarthy and Thomas Moylan, best in their classes.

Also playing for Ireland was Garret Culliton who started it all way back in 1997.

"We've an outside chance of qualifying for Rio, but it will be tough. Only the top three from Europe will go," says John McCarthy.

Ireland is now ranked 13th in the world.

Para rugby

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