At a successful Special Olympic World Summer Games hosted in Los Angeles earlier this month, the men’s and women’s basketball teams both took away gold medals in dominant performances.
Special Olympics Basketball offers a series of adaptations of FIBA rules that are optional when conducting team competitions. Some of these adaptations include adjusting the length of the game, allowing a player to take two steps before traveling, allowing the free throw shooter ten seconds to release the ball and enforcing a rule that allows only five seconds of closely guarded play in front court.
Led by coach Michael Morgan, the men defeated Jamaica 43-24 in the final to claim the gold medal while the women with Margaret Robertson at the helm, proved far too good for Russia in their first-placed playoff, winning 56-13.
That victory marked the third consecutive victory at the Special Olympics World Summer Games for the women and they will look to defend their title at the next tournament in 2019.
Until that date, the Special Olympics will continue to deliver weekly sports training and regular competition for people with an intellectual disability in communities around Australia.
The 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games Men’s Team: Alexander Barnes (NSW), Jake De La Motte (VIC), Bradley Kinross (SA), Jack Littleton (ACT), Philip Mahoney (VIC), Dean Pallier (NSW), Thomas Preston (NSW), Wayne Kinross (SA).
The 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games Women’s Team: Skye Cameron (VIC), Dianne Demello (NSW), Jessica Duncan (NSW), Nicole Harris (NSW), Krystelle Lloyd (VIC), Jessica McCulloch (VIC), Eliza Mills (NSW), Gabrielle Turley (TAS).