Gliders win Silver Medal at Paralympics

Gliders win Silver Medal at Paralympics

A gallant Australian Gliders squad has claimed the Silver Medal after going down to Germany 58-44 in their final game at the 2012 London Paralympic Games this morning.


After a strong opening from the Gliders, it was the Germans who went on a 10-0 run late in the first quarter that set the tone for the rest of the game.

Getting within four points early in the final period, the Gliders appeared set to make a late charge before the impressive Germans steadied to ensure the win.

Basketball Australia CEO Kristina Keneally said the Gliders would come home from London with their heads held high.

“The Gliders have been nothing short of brilliant at the Paralympic Games and this Silver Medal is just reward for their outstanding performance,” Ms Keneally said.

“This is the Gliders fourth consecutive Paralympic Medal - a remarkable achievement.

“All of the players, coaches and support staff have done a fantastic job and we can’t wait to greet them on their return home.”

Kylie Gauci was inspirational for the Gliders, leading the scoring charge with 15 points and 5 assists, while Shelley Chaplin added 8 points and 5 assists.

It was a classic arm wrestle from the outset, with the amazing defensive pressure from the Gliders making life difficult for the normally free-scoring Germans.

Three-time Paralympian Gauci was the tone-setter early, finding ways to score and setup teammates, before the Germans began to find their rhythm.

Trailing the Gliders by six with under four minutes remaining in the opening quarter, the Germans went on a 10-0 to claim a four-point advantage at the first change.

With the shots not falling for the Gliders it came back to strong defence to stay in the contest as the Germans threatened to blow the game out, leading by double figures.

Important by late buckets from Chaplin and Cobi Crispin closed the gap to seven points at the main interval.

The second half continued in the same vein as the game started, with neither side able to take the ascendency as the Gliders looked to close the gap on the Germans.

The Gliders outscored their opponents 9-8 for the quarter to give themselves a shot going into the final period.

Early baskets from Gauci and Chaplin cut the lead to four points, but as they had all game the Germans found a way to regain the momentum, ultimately finishing 14-point victors.