Silver for University of Sydney wheelchair basketball players at London 2012

8 September 2012

PhD student Sarah Stewart, part of the silver medal-winning Australian women's wheelchair basketball team.
PhD student Sarah Stewart, part of the silver medal-winning Australian women's wheelchair basketball team.

Australia's women's basketball team, including University of Sydney athletes Sarah Stewart and Katie Hill, have won silver at the London 2012 Paralympics after losing 58-44 to Germany in the gold medal match on Friday evening London time.

The Gliders had hoped to turn their Beijing bronze into gold in the North Greenwich Arena after overcoming defending Paralympic champions the United States in a nail-biting semi-final, and took an early 10-4 lead in the first quarter of the final, including two points from Katie Hill.

However, Germany, the silver medallists from Beijing, were also intent on finishing higher up the podium than in 2008, and scored an unanswered nine points - five of them from Mareike Adermann - to take a lead they would never surrender.

In front of a crowd of almost 13,000 people, the Gliders closed the gap to four points early in the final quarter before the Germans pulled away to secure the gold, with Adermann top-scoring for the game with 19 points.

University of Sydney athletes Stewart and Hill contributed two and four points respectively. Philosophy PhD student Stewart is a Sydney Uni Sport & Fitness (SUSF) Elite Athlete Program (EAP) scholarship holder, and Sydney Uni WheelKings and Wheelchair Flames representative. Hill is also a Sydney Uni WheelKings and Wheelchair Flames player.

Two other University of Sydney Paralympians were in action on Friday, both in the pool. Prue Watt finished fifth in the 200m individual medley SM13, while Sarah Rose was sixth in the 50m butterfly S6. Three-time Paralympian and Sydney Uni Swim Club (SUSC) member Watt still has a chance to add to the bronze medal she won in the women's S13 50m freestyle earlier in the week when she competes in the 100m breaststroke SB13 on Saturday.

Early on Sunday morning (AEST), psychology honours student and former EAP scholarship holder Angela Ballard will compete in one of the final events of the Paralympic athletics program, the women's 400m T53 race. Ballard will hope to add gold to the silver and bronze medals she won earlier in the week, in the T53 200m and 100m events.

More than 30 students, graduates and other members of the University of Sydney community are competing at the 2012 London Olympics and Paralympics. They finished the Olympics with a total of eight medals, and have so far taken two silver and two bronze at the Paralympics.

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Enquiries: Ben Wilson, 9351 6753, 0402 128 073,

Andrew Tilley, Sydney Uni Sport and Fitness, 9351 8116,