HE Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA) Limerick Team took home the trophy at this year’s IWA National Boccia Championships for their first time.
Throughout 2017, teams and individuals have been competing in the IWA National Boccia Championships. Over 200 people with disabilities took part in the championships competing in IWA Community Centres nationwide with the national finals taking place in Dundalk Sports Centre.
Of the ten teams who qualified for the National Finals, it was Limerick and Ardee who met in what was an exciting final played over six ends. IWA founding member, Dr Oliver Murphy presented Limerick’s captain, Tim O’Rioran the trophy after Limerick came out 4-3 winners.
Boccia is a precision ball sport and a game of strategy and accuracy. The sport is contested at local, national and international levels, by athletes with physical disabilities and is played in most IWA Community Centres around the country. In 2017, 32 teams representing IWA Community Centres through Ireland entered the All Ireland National Boccia Championships. Regional qualifying championships saw ten teams qualify for the National Finals which took place in the Dundalk Sports Centre.
Ciaran McLoughlin, IWA Coordinator spoke about the sport, “Boccia is an extremely popular sport amongst IWA members. After a very successful competition in 2016 we established the All Ireland National Boccia Championships, which brought together 200 people with physical disabilities, competing in qualifying competitions at regional events nationwide.”
IWA Limerick National Boccia Champions Captain Tim O Riordan
CEO of Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA) Rosemary Keogh presented the winning Limerick Team with their trophy and medals and noted the significant achievement. IWA members Tim O’Riordan, Paul Kelly, Trevor Kennedy, Ann Marie Broderick and Breda O’Connor were delighted to take the All Ireland National Boccia Champions title back to Limerick and training has already begun for the 2018 event.