Last week, after successfully raising the £35k needed for the trip, the GB Women’s team traveled to Seoul, Korea for 2015 IBSA World Games. The tournament featured some of the best Goalball teams in the world and served as a qualifying event for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
Andrea Logan (Glasgow), Anna Tipton (Cambridge), Georgie Bullen (Leicester), Laura Perry (RNC Hereford) and Sarah Leiter (Cambridge) rose spectacularly to the occasion. An impressive 5-1 victory to Australia was followed by a further 4 wins in the group stages along with two draws including one against London 2012 gold medalists Japan ensured their place in the quarter finals where they were beaten by eventual winners Israel.
Finishing 5th place, the team must now wait for the results of the last regional competitions of the season. If these tournaments are won by teams already qualified for Rio, such as Israel and China, spots will be freed up. Thanks to their performance in Korea, Team GB are officially in line for one of these tickets to Rio.
Anna Tipton said: “Just to reach our fundraising target and board that plane to Seoul was huge achievement so to beat some of the best teams in the world to 5th place is incredible. We fought hard this tournament and have come home knowing we have done everything possible to get to Rio. It’s going to be a nail-biting wait but for now we’re going to enjoy our success.”
Mike Reilly, CEO of Goalball UK added, “We have beaten teams positioned high in the world rankings and given ourselves a fighting chance of Rio. This is an outstanding result not least because we achieved this on the back of individual fundraising initiatives. A truly great effort from the squad and Head Coach Aaron Ford.”