Twelve of Scotland’s top Basketball players are celebrating the perfect start to 2018 after being selected to represent Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Games on Australia’s Gold Coast in April, when Basketball will make its return to the Commonwealth Games for the first time since 2006.
Glasgow Rocks and GB Basketball star, Gareth Murray, is the only returning Scot from the 2006 Games and will become Scotland’s only Basketball player to have played at two Commonwealth Games.
Fellow Rocks team-mate and GB Basketball captain, Kieron Achara will make his Games debut, after missing out through injury last time round.
Having represented GB at the London 2012 Olympics, Achara brings a wealth of experience to Team Scotland and is excited to experience another multi-sports event.
Commenting on his selection to the team for Gold Coast 2018, Achara added:
“I am really excited to be part of Team Scotland for the first time, having missed out in 2006 due to injury, I am really looking forward to being part of the squad for Gold Coast. It is a unique opportunity for us to represent Scotland and the whole team have been working hard to ensure that we are the best prepared team on the Gold Coast this April. Having been part of Team GB at London 2012, I know how special multi-sport events are and being part of the wider Team Scotland will be a really enjoyable experience for the whole team.”
Among an exciting line up of players making their Games debut, 17 year-old Callan Low becomes the youngest player ever to represent Team Scotland in Basketball, stepping up from being Vice-Captain of the Scotland U18 team last season.
The team will get their Commonwealth campaign underway in Townsville on April 5th with a crucial game against England before facing Cameroon and India in their other Pool B games.
Speaking on the team selection, basketballscotland Chief Executive Kevin Pringle said:
“Everyone at basketballscotland would like to congratulate the 12 athletes selected to represent Team Scotland at Gold Coast 2018. Today’s announcement is a testament to the hard work and dedication shown by each individual selected. With just a few months until the Games get underway, we are confident that training is going well and that the team will be ready to make a significant impact on the Gold Coast in April. The whole team at basketballscotland is delighted to celebrate such an exciting day for all of the athletes and coaching staff involved and we wish the whole of Team Scotland the best of luck for April’s Games.”
Also announced today are athletes from the sports of Para-Powerlifting, Table Tennis, Triathlon and Para-Swimming.
Selected for his second Games, powerlifter Micky Yule will be looking to make the step onto the podium after a fourth place finish at Glasgow 2014. Previously a competitor for the Army Weightlifting team, he was injured by an improvised explosive device while serving with the Scots Royal Engineers in 2010. After a year out to recover from his injuries, he returned to training, becoming the first Scot to compete at a Commonwealth Games in Para-Sport Powerlifting. He was also the first British athlete to win gold at the 2016 Invictus Games, taking titles in both 2014 and 2016. After several injury setbacks in 2017, he is on the comeback trail and, if he can recapture the form that places him second on the Commonwealth rankings, he is a true medal contender in the Heavyweight division.
Micky Yule said: “I am proud to be selected for my second Commonwealth Games. I finished fourth in Glasgow last time out and felt how close it was to miss out on those medals. I go to the Gold Coast with one mission and that’s to come home with a medal. Nothing else will do!”
Two young Para-Swimmers are also named to today and will be aiming to emulate the success of swimming sensation Erraid Davies at Glasgow 2014. Holder of an incredible 14 Scottish records in the S9 and S10 categories, 14 year old Toni Shaw is the youngest athlete named for Team Scotland for Gold Coast 2018 to date. Selection comes on the back of an outstanding 2017, where she won multiple medals at the World Para-Swimming Series and earned selection to the senior team for the World Para-Swimming Championships in Mexico.
Toni will swim the SB9 100m Breaststroke, the event in which Davies won her memorable bronze in Glasgow, as well as the S9 100m Freestyle, S9 100m Backstroke and the SM10 200m Individual Medley. She is joined by 16 year old Beth Johnston in the 200m Individual Medley. Beth took two gold and a silver at the penultimate World Para-Swimming Series event in Indianapolis and set Scottish records over 50m and 100m Backstroke in 2017.
Ally Whike, Performance Director at Scottish Swimming said: “Both Toni and Beth have upped their game throughout the qualification period and I’ve been impressed by their approach to each meet they have competed in. This will hold them in good stead to perform at their best come April.”
In Table Tennis, Perth’s Gavin Rumgay returns to Team Scotland for a fourth Commonwealth Games, having taken a record-equalling 12th Scottish Championship Singles title in 2017. He is joined by Craig Howieson, making his third Games appearance and 23 year old Colin Dalgleish, who represented Great Britain at the 2017 World University Games and will make his Team Scotland debut in Gold Coast. Each will play in the Singles and Team event, with a Doubles pairing still to be finalised.
Richard Yule, Table Tennis Scotland Chief Operating Officer, said: “The table tennis community in Scotland will be delighted to know that Gavin, Craig and Colin have been selected to join Team Scotland for the Games in Australia. Congratulations and best wishes for a successful Games to all three players, who I know will be great ambassadors in the Gold Coast, for their sport and for Scotland.”
Team Scotland’s golden girl of the track at the Bahamas 2017 Commonwealth Youth Games, Erin Wallace makes an immediate step up into the senior team for Gold Coast 2018. However, in a similar vein to Beth Potter, previously named to the team, it will be in Triathlon that she looks to make her mark in Gold Coast. Competing in both sports for several years, Erin first represented Triathlon Scotland in 2011 and has since combined winning European Youth and Commonwealth Youth Games gold over 1500m on the track, with successful participation at international level in Triathlon, taking European Junior Cup silver twice in 2017. Erin’s selection will also allow Scotland to enter a Mixed Relay team in Gold Coast, joining Potter, Marc Austin and Grant Sheldon.
Delighted to be selected for Gold Coast, Erin said: “I was lucky enough to be one of the Queen’s baton bearers leading up to Glasgow 2014 and those Games really inspired me. At the time people asked if I was thinking about Gold Coast, but I’d never even considered it. I’m very grateful to be given this opportunity and it will be a surreal experience in an amazing place.
“I’m lucky to have started my Commonwealth experience at the Youth Games in The Bahamas last year and I am very excited about continuing this into the senior Games in a different sport.”
Welcoming the newly selected athletes, Jon Doig OBE, Team Scotland Chef de Mission, said: “Congratulations to every one of the athletes selected today. It is fantastic to welcome athletes back to Team Scotland for their second, third or even fourth Games, along with an exciting group of young athletes making their debut at this level. Every athlete named to the team has met our tough selection standards and I look forward to watching them all perform with distinction in Gold Coast.”
Today’s announcement brings the total number of athletes named for Team Scotland to 117, with more team selections set to be made in the coming weeks, with the full team due to be finalised in early March.
Name Hometown / Lives
Kieron Achara Stirling / Paisley
Jonathan Bunyan Falkirk / Falkirk
Bantu Burroughs Charleston, St Kitts and Nevis / Glasgow
Chris Cleary Paisley / Houston, Renfrewshire
Nick Collins Glasgow / Renfrew
Alasdair Fraser Falkirk / Falkirk
Kyle Jimenez Edinburgh / Edinburgh
Callan Low Kilmacolm / Kilmacolm
Fraser Malcolm Falkirk / Falkirk
Gareth Murray Glasgow / Rutherglen
Sean Nealon-Lino Edinburgh / Edinburgh
Michael Vigor Bristol / Bristol
Name Hometown / Lives
Beth Johnston Galashiels / Galashiels
Toni Shaw Aberdeen / Aberdeen
Name Hometown / Lives
Micky Yule Musselburgh / Southampton
TABLE TENNIS (3):
Name Hometown / Lives
Colin Dalgleish Ecclesmachan / Aberdeen
Craig Howieson Edinburgh / Edinburgh
Gavin Rumgay Perth / London
Name Hometown / Lives
Erin Wallace Newton Mearns / Glasgow