Sport-by-sport - Boccia
|Performance Director||Matt Hammond|
|Funding Award (2009-2013)||£2,333,300|
|London 2012 Performance||1 Silver, 1 Bronze|
|Athletes on World Class Performance Programme||6|
|Past Performances||Paralympic Games, Beijing, 2008: Gold (1); Silver (1)|
|Press Officer||Duncan Tunbridge|
|Press Officer tel||0207 842 5785 / 07768 796 904|
|National governing body||Great Britain Boccia Federation|
“The support both the GB Boccia Squad and myself have had through the National Lottery has had a significant positive impact on our performances and has enabled us to be the force we currently are in the world of boccia. A big thank you to everyone who buys a lottery ticket, it really does make a difference.”
Boccia Olympic Champion Nigel Murray
Boccia is a Paralympic sport, similar to the French game of boule, which is played by wheelchair athletes with cerebral palsy and related locomotor conditions, with players required to be in a seated position within a throwing box at one end of the playing court. UK Sport currently funds six athletes on the World Class Performance Programme, with the classification system ensuring an even playing field so that the players compete against others with similar disabilities.
The sport was introduced to the Paralympic programme at the New York and Stoke Mandeville 1984 Games. Today, there are seven medal events on the programme, all of which are open to athletes of either gender.
Boccia is currently played competitively in more than 50 countries worldwide and Britain will be represented by a strong squad of nine players at London 2012. Nigel Murray, Dan Bentley, David Smith, Zoe Robinson are the current Paralympic champions in the BC1/BC2 Team event and all four will return to defend their title in London. Murray also won individual silver in Beijing with a strong performance in the BC2 class.
GB Boccia, supported by the UK Sport Major Events Programme, hosted the Boccia World Cup in Belfast in 2011. It was a critical year for the GB Boccia athletes and hosting their biggest event of 2011 in the UK ensured that the athletes were able to compete in a familiar environment with limited travel and supportive fans, which were critical considerations for the team.
UK Sport’s Research and Innovation team worked with BC3 players within GB Boccia to develop new ramps to help with accuracy and consistency.
Furthermore, UK Sport’s Coaching Team have resourced and provided mentoring support to the entire coaching staff working with athletes in preparation for the Games. This has been staged over the past 12 months in order to continually develop the skills and expertise of the GB Boccia’s coaches.
Did You Know?
Paralympic champion Nigel Murray has been on the UK Sport World Class Performance Programme since January 2000.