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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 January 2006, 10:31 GMT
Sledge hockey side get Turin nod
Nathan Stephens
Great Britain have named a 13-strong sledge hockey squad for the Winter Paralympic Games in Turin, which begin on 10 March.

The British side clinched their place with victory in the final qualifying tournament in Italy in November.

But they had an anxious wait before their participation was confirmed by the British Paralympic Association.

The team travel to Stockholm this weekend for a three-game series against Sweden, ranked third in the world.

In Turin, Great Britain, who are ranked fifth in the world, will face the top seeds Norway, Canada, who are ranked fourth, and the hosts.

Group B contains the USA, Sweden, Japan and Germany.

I know that the guys are going to surprise people with the way they are performing
GB coach Kevin Whiteman
The GB squad includes Paralympic sailor Stephen Thomas and talented Welsh teenager Nathan Stephens, who will be competing at the Commonwealth Games immediately after the close of the Winter Paralympics.

Stephens, 19, has been selected to represent Wales in the discus event for elite athletes with a disability in Australia.

The sledge hockey squad, along with the remainder of the GB Winter Paralympic squad are to attend a reception at the Houses of Paraliament on Thursday.

GB team coach Kevin Whiteman said: "We have a new belief in ourselves and in each other.

"I know that the guys are going to surprise people with the way they are performing at the moment and will give everything they have to do well.

"The competition is going to be tough as the rest of the teams get more ice time and games then we are able to but the guys are spending a lot of time in the gym working on conditioning and as we only have a small bench this is going to be crucial to our success."

GB squad: Philip Saunders (Nottingham), Gary Vaughan (Cardiff), Ian Warner (London), Simon Berry (Hull), Karl Nicholson (Manchester), Nathan Stephens (Wales), Stephen Thomas (Wales), Russell Willey (Cardiff), David French (Scunthorpe), Richard Whitehead (Nottingham), Gary Farmer (Nottingham), Mark Briggs (Nottingham), David Hall (Chesterfield)
Non-travelling reserve: Matthew Lloyd (Withernsea)
Coach Kevin Whiteman.

Sledge hockey team set for Turin
07 Nov 05 |  Disability Sport


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