Paris Paralympics 2024: The Wheelchair Basketball Teams To Watch

A group of women engaged in wheelchair basketball. The Aussie Rollers and Aussie Gliders are the Australian teams.

2024 is a Paralympics year, with this auspicious event taking place in Paris in August. One of the big ticket events every Paralympics is the wheelchair basketball segment – where the world’s best Paralympians compete in this cut-throat event. This will include the Aussie Rollers and Aussie Gliders.

April will mark the 2024 IWBF Repechage Tournaments – the last chance for teams to qualify to compete in Paris. Here’s what you need to know about the Australian team and other star teams to watch this year.

A group of women engaged in wheelchair basketball. The Aussie Rollers and Aussie Gliders are the Australian teams.

2024 IWBF Repechage Tournaments

Organised by the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation, the Repechage Tournaments for men and women offer teams a final opportunity to qualify for the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games. The men’s competition will take place in Antibes, France, from April 12 to April 15. The women’s competition is set for Osaka, Japan, from April 17 to April 20​.

At the time of writing, Australia’s Rollers, Great Britain and the United States have qualified for the men’s 2024 Paralympic Games. For the women’s tournament, Great Britain, the United States, and China have qualified.

The Repechage Tournaments​ will give several teams a final chance to get through to the Paralympics.

The wheelchair basketball teams to watch

Which wheelchair basketball teams should you keep your eye on this year?

Great Britain’s men’s team has shown strong performances, Australia’s teams consistently compete at a high level, and Canada’s teams are known for their strategic play and resilience.

These defending champions will also be ones to watch:

Men’s wheelchair basketball defending champions: United States

The US men’s team track record of strong performances, including being the defending champions from the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, places them among the top contenders.

Their consistent performance, depth of talent, and experience make them a team to watch, as they’ve historically been among the leaders in international wheelchair basketball competitions.

Women’s wheelchair basketball defending champions: Netherlands

The Netherlands women’s team is a must-watch for the upcoming Paralympics because of their exceptional performance in recent years, including winning the gold medal at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.

Their strong teamwork, strategic play, and having some of the best players in the world contribute to their reputation. This combination of talent and achievement marks them as a formidable competitor. They’re a favourite for the podium in this year’s Paralympic Games.

What are Australia’s chances?

Australia’s wheelchair basketball teams, the Aussie Rollers (men’s) and the Aussie Gliders (women’s), have historically been strong competitors on the international stage too.

Given our track record and the depth of talent within both teams, we’re certainly among the nations to watch, capable of challenging for podium finishes.

Who to watch in Team Australia

For Team Australia, key players to watch include Tristan Knowles, known for his scoring ability and leadership on the court.

Bill Latham brings experience and a strong presence in both offense and defense. Both players have been instrumental in past successes for the Rollers. They’ll likely be central figures in their strategy for the upcoming Paralympics.

For the Gliders, players like Amber Merritt, known for her scoring prowess and on-court versatility, and Georgia Munro-Cook, recognised for her strong play and leadership, are athletes to keep an eye on.

Another Australian star who’s not in this year’s Paralympics team but made waves during the 2022 Invictus Games is Stephen French. Find out more about him here: The Invictus Games and Stephen French.

Newcomer to wheelchair basketball? Here’s a quick lowdown

If you’re totally new to this wheelchair sport, it’s helpful to understand a few basic terms. These include:

  • Key area: The painted area near the basket
  • Traveling: Moving too many times without bouncing the ball
  • Classification: System that levels the playing field based on players’ physical abilities

Key rules include that the team must attempt a shot within 24 seconds. Players can push their wheelchair twice before they must dribble, pass, or shoot the ball.

These basics will get you started in enjoying and understanding the sport more deeply. For more detailed rules and terms, visit the IWBF’s official website or resources dedicated to wheelchair basketball.

How to show your support for Team Australia

Want to show your love and support for the Aussie Gliders and Aussie Rollers?

You can start by following Australia’s official Paralympics Instagram account to catch all the updates and share the love online. Then give the Aussie Rollers and Aussie Gliders a follow, too.

And if you’re up for it, watching their games live or through broadcasts is a great way to get in on the action. Plus, talking about the sport and spreading the word about their games really amps up the support. Every bit helps to let our athletes know we’re behind them all the way.

Insurance for your independence

While Blue Badge Insurance doesn’t cover sporting equipment like wheelchairs for competitive impact sports, we do cover the wheelchair you use daily. Whether it’s custom, manual, or powered we offer a cost effective wheelchair insurance plan that helps you cover fees for repairs or replacement after an accident.

We also cover a large range of mobility equipment with mobility scooter insurance and car insurance for wheelchair accessible vehicles and converted cars. Find out about getting as much as 25% off disability car insurance if you hold a valid disability parking permit.

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