Venue: North Greenwich Arena; Olympic Park - Basketball Arena
Dates: Thursday 30 August – Saturday 8 September 2012
Medal events: 2
Athletes: 264 (144 men, 120 women; 12 men’s teams and 10 women’s teams)
Wheelchair Basketball was developed by American World War II veterans as part of their rehabilitation programme, but its popularity soon spread around the world. Now played in more than 80 countries, it is one of the most dynamic on the Paralympic programme, and should draw large and enthusiastic crowds to the Basketball Arena and North Greenwich Arena during London 2012.
The rules of Wheelchair Basketball are broadly similar to Basketball. The court is the same size, the basket is at the same height, and the scoring is identical: two points for a regular shot from open play, one point for each successful free throw and three points for a shot from distance (6.75m from the basket). Players move the ball around the court by passing or dribbling, and are required to throw or bounce the ball after every two pushes of the wheels on their chairs to avoid being penalised for travelling.
There are 12
players in each team, with no more than five on court. Every player is assigned
a point value based on their functional ability, from 0.5 (the most severely
disabled) to 4.5, and the total on-court point value for each team should not
exceed 14 during play.
Both the men’s and women’s tournaments begin with a round-robin – the 12 men’s teams divided into two groups of six teams, the 10 women’s teams divided into groups of five. The top four teams in each group qualify for the quarter-finals, from which point the tournaments are played to a knockout format.
Wheelchair Basketball featured at the first Games in Rome 1960, and has remained on the Paralympic programme ever since. The women’s competition was added at the Tel Aviv 1968 Games.At London 2012, the Basketball competition will take place at two venues. The preliminary games will be split between the Basketball Arena, a new purpose-built venue in the Olympic Park, and the state-of-the-art North Greenwich Arena just across the Thames. All quarter-finals, semi-finals and medal games will take place at North Greenwich Arena.
- Assist: A pass that leads
directly to a basket scored by a teammate.
- Downtown: The area outside the three-point line.
- Shot clock: A timer measuring the length of time since the last shot. If the ball doesn’t touch the rim or pass through the net within 24 seconds, possession passes to the opposition.
See Wheelchair Basketball in action on ParalympicSportTV
There are plenty
of opportunities to play Wheelchair Basketball around the UK, with players of
all backgrounds enjoying this fast and skilful sport. Find out more by visiting
the website for the Great Britain Wheelchair Basketball Association as well as the Active Places website to
find a court near you. You can also learn more about how to get involved on the
Parasport website, while the International Wheelchair
Basketball Federation offers plenty of information about the sport
at a global level.
During the London 2012 Games, the Basketball Arena will host Basketball, Wheelchair Basketball, Wheelchair Rugby and the final stages of the Handball competition.
Originally built for the Millennium celebrations, North Greenwich Arena has been transformed into a sports and entertainment arena with shops, restaurants and more.
Name: Patrick Anderson
Date of birth: 22 August 1979
Patrick was a ‘child star’ who led Canada’s Under-23 team to two World Championships. He was still just 21 when he won the first of his two Paralympic gold medals at the Sydney 2000 Games. Patrick is regarded as one of the best players in the history of the sport. He has played professionally in both the Australian and German leagues.
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