2023 Team Selection
Ottawa, ON (December 20, 2022) – The 2023 National Boccia Team selection was announced today, representing the best boccia athletes in Canada. All athletes selected to the team proved their potential on the international competition scene in 2022. There will be nine returning athletes with Ryan Rondeau (Edmonton, AB) the new addition to the squad who will compete in BC3 male and BC3 Pairs.
The ten athletes selected are Alison Levine (Montréal, QC), Danik Allard (Bois-des-Filion, QC), Joëlle Guérette (Montréal, QC), Iulian Ciobanu (Montréal, QC), Kristyn Collins (St. John’s, NL), Lance Cryderman (Sudbury, ON), Lois Martin (St. John’s, NL), Marylou Martineau (Québec City, QC), Marco Dispaltro (St.-Jérôme, QC), and Rondeau.
Rondeau competed at the Cali World Boccia Challenger in September where he won silver in the individual event. His hard work at training is paying off with a gold at the 2022 Défi sportif AlterGo National Open last April and a bronze at the 2022 Canadian Boccia Championships in November.
“I’m really proud of what I was able to accomplish this year. Qualifying for the Parapan Ams is a huge goal for 2023, but there’s a lot to do before then. I’m really looking forward to competing on the world stage again and to keep improving.”
Rondeau replaces Éric Bussière (Verchères, QC) in the BC3 male category who took a leave of absence recently after nearly a decade on the National Boccia Team. Joining Rondeau in BC3 class are Guérette and Martineau.
Collins is another athlete making a big return in 2023 after winning a bronze in BC2 Individual Female at the 2022 Rio World Boccia Cup last April. “Every opportunity to compete internationally is a learning experience and a chance to improve my game. In every match I learn something about myself and garner skills I will need to be a more complete player. You have to play the best to grow and for me it’s motivating to watch and learn from the best.”
BC2 athlete Allard, plus BC1 athletes Cryderman and Martin round out the group. As a team, the BC1/2 class are currently ranked twelfth in the world.
All three BC4s are returning again next year which includes Ciobanu, Dispaltro, and Levine. Ciobanu and Levine just finished winning a bronze medal at the Rio World Championships against the best BC4 Pairs in the world. Each competed in Individual play at the event, with Levine keeping her top three world ranking going into the new year. Dispaltro, a 2012 London Paralympic medalist in BC4 Pairs, continues to be a threat in the BC4 class.
Head Coach, César Nicolai, is anticipating a big year ahead. “We wanted some continuity for the current three-year cycle and towards the Paris Paralympics in 2024. I’m convinced that with this group of athletes we will achieve great results at the 2023 Parapan Ams. This is a group of dynamic and invested athletes. I’m very satisfied with this selection.”
2023 National Boccia Team
Lance Cryderman (Sudbury, ON); Performance Partner: Danielle Cryderman*
Lois Martin (St. John’s, NL); Performance Partner: Jim Martin*
Danik Allard (Bois-des-Filion, QC); Performance Partner: Julie Renaud
Kristyn Collins (St. John’s, NL); Performance Partner: Blaise Collins
Ryan Rondeau (Edmonton, AB); Performance Partner: Meghan Lewis*
Joëlle Guérette (Montréal, QC); Performance Partner: Jonathan Manseau*
Marylou Martineau (Québec City, QC); Performance Partner: Josée Duquette*
Alison Levine (Montréal, QC); Performance Partner: Roberta Fried-Levine
Iulian Ciobanu (Montréal, QC); Performance Partner: Sorin-Emilian Susan
Marco Dispaltro (St.-Jérôme, QC); Performance Partner: To be determined
*Actively assists athlete during competition on the field of play in the BC1 and BC3 category only
About Boccia Canada
Boccia Canada is the boccia delivery arm of the Canadian Cerebral Palsy Sports Association (CCPSA), the National Sport Organization for the Paralympic sport of boccia. Boccia Canada is focused on providing athletes and individuals of all ages and skill with the chance to play a unique Paralympic sport. CCPSA collaborates with partners to increase the participation of Canadians with cerebral palsy and related disabilities in sport and physical activity, while leading, developing and growing boccia from grassroots, to producing World and Paralympic Champions.
Boccia is a Paralympic sport of precision and strategy similar to lawn bowling or curling, played by athletes with Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, and related disabilities. It is one of only two Paralympic sports that do not have an Olympic counterpart. Athletes compete in one of six sport classes based on their level and type of disability: BC1, BC2, BC3, BC4, BC5, and Open. For more information on boccia, visit www.bocciacanada.ca.