Scotland Women Take Place for Wheelchair 3x3 Debut

April 15, 2022

There was agony and ecstasy for Scotland at the Birmingham 2022 Wheelchair Basketball 3 x 3 Qualifiers at Inverclyde on 14 April, with the women booking their place in convincing style and the men missing out by the slenderest of margins.

Wheelchair Basketball 3 x 3 will make its Commonwealth Games debut in Birmingham and the qualifying tournament, hosted by the National Sports Training Centre, saw Scotland’s women take on Wales in a best of three format, while the men faced Wales and Northern Ireland in a round-robin, with the top two teams then battling it out in a play-off final for a place at Birmingham 2022.

Played on a half court with only one basket, 3 x 3 is an exciting, fast-paced format with the winning team being the first to 21 point or the highest score after 10 minutes of play.

Scotland’s women’s side of Jude Hamer, Lynsey Speirs, Jess Whyte and Robyn Love were in control from the start and followed 21-4 and 17-3 wins over Wales with a perfect 21-0 victory in the final game to secure their place in Birmingham this summer.

Emotions were running high as captain Robyn Love summed up what it meant to have the chance to represent Scotland on the world stage: “Unbelievable! I’ve been to two Paralympic Games, I’ve been with GB at World Championships and won silver medals and won European medals for GB, and now I get to represent Scotland, wow!. It’s just something I thought I’d never be able to do and I’m just so grateful for this opportunity now with 3 x 3 in the Commonwealth Games. I think it’s really exciting, not only for Scotland but for wheelchair basketball as we bring in this new game.”

For the men, a tense opener against Northern Ireland saw the team of David Hird, Josh Manson, Finley Tonner and Ben Leitch come up just short 12-14. A 18-7 win over Wales in the second game however set up a rematch with Northern Ireland in the final, and what a final it turned out to be.

With only a few seconds left on the clock, Scotland levelled the score at 9-9 to send the game into overtime, which in the 3 x 3 format means the first to score 2 points takes the win. Buoyed by the boost to their chances, Scotland took the first basket, followed by one for Northern Ireland. It wasn’t to be for Scotland however with Northern Ireland the ones to find the all-important second basket to take the match 11-10 and the place at the Games.

Catch up with all the action here: IWBF Europe 3×3 Commonwealth Games Qualifiers – YouTube 

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