Boccia Canada – Para Pan American Games
Boccia Canada – Great start for the national team in Lima
Lima, Peru (August 30, 2019) – The boccia competition for the 2019 Parapan American Games has officially begun. Day 1 included individual performances by all seven National Training Squad athletes in classes BC1, BC3, and BC4. Across the board, Canada has performed very well so far in this Games with at least one win from all seven athletes today at the competition.
Hanif Mawji (Burnaby, BC) had a difficult first loss against Ailen Flores from Argentina, but still has a potential to qualify after winning against Yushae Desilva-Andrade from Bermuda in his second game 6-2.
There were big performances by the BC3s including Philippe Lord (Montréal, QC) who won 9-1 capitalizing on Guatemala’s Eimy Losley Tánchez misplaced balls. Éric Bussière (Verchères, QC) sweeped the hosts, Peru, and won 11-0. It was a game of minute precision from the veteran and previous Parapan Ams medallist. Marylou Martineau (Québec City, QC), the youngest player on the team, was able to seal one victory against Jesus Romero of Colombia with a big push after the first end.
The four Canadian BC4s are top seeds in the competition which they made known in their first three games. Alison Levine (Montréal, QC) is ranked first at this tournament, Iulian Ciobanu (Montréal, QC) sixth, and Marco Dispaltro (Sainte-Jérôme, QC) eighth. Levine made it look easy with an 11-1 win over Colombia’s Leidy Chica. Ciobanu made many strategic moves including bounce overs and ricochets to seal his first game win of the tournament. Dispaltro played two close games, winning one and losing the other. He is currently 3rd in his pool but still has a chance to qualify after tomorrow’s match-ups.
Éric Bussière (BC3) – “I’m confident that we accomplished what we had practiced. To be able to win on the field of play with the craziness of the Peru crowd… It feels good to take the win. It’s rare to have the chance to have spectators and it’s very encouraging. It was really fun!”
Iulian Ciobanu (BC4) – “The next game I will start with confidence. The person I play tomorrow is the best at this tournament so it will be a challenge, for sure. The strategy for the next game will be interesting because he and I use a lot of explosive power. The game will be very precise and we will be competing for every millimeter to reach the jack. I’m sure it will be a great game and I will prepare myself to win.”
César Nicolai (BC4 Coach) – “The competition has started and it’s looking really good for our team. The athletes are really focused. Alison showed a lot of confidence during her game and Marco built his confidence end after end. Iulian put in work today and will be ready to fight against Euclides Grisales from Colombia tomorrow. It’s the first game on this new surface so it’s never easy. I believe we’ll play even better in the next games. I’m confident about that.”
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