Edwards lands gold medal with GB

Littlehampton wheelchair basketball star Lewis Edwards was part of the Great Britain under-23 World Championship team to break new ground earlier this month.

Thursday, 6th July 2017, 12:00 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 3:29 am
Littlehampton wheelchair basketball star Lewis Edwards

Edwards, 18, was in the GB squad that took gold in the international tournament staged in Canada.

The under-23 team became the first-ever Great British wheelchair basketball side at either senior or junior level to medal at a World Championships.

GB managed to win seven of their eight matches in the competition, scoring a 54-43 final victory over Turkey to take the gold.

Edwards revealed he was lost for words after being part of a history-making Great British team and said: “I’d go as far as to say it was the best two weeks of my life. I could not have won the competition with a better group of people.

“No other Great British team at senior or junior level had ever medalled at a World Championships before us.

“The senior team finished seventh at the last World Championships, while the under-23 team came fourth in the last tournament to be staged.

“It was a remarkable competition, we didn’t just medal, we won gold, which was well deserved.”

Great Britain’s only defeat against Japan, in their second of five group games, was filled with controversy.

The score suggests GB lost 61-59 following an error from the scorers but Edwards’ under-23 team should have actually won by two points but the result could not be reversed.

The two would meet again in the semi-finals, with Great Britain gaining revenge with a 76-34 victory.

Edwards admitted the earlier controversy made the semi-final win taste even sweeter.

He said: “It shows that we lost one match in the tournament but that should not have been the case. A scoring error meant we lost by two points, when we should have won by two.

“We wanted to protest for the whole day after the defeat but it could not be overturned. It didn’t matter in the end and we smashed them in the semi-final.”

Edwards’ long-term aim is now to earn selection for the senior Great British wheelchair basketball team in the future.

He said: “The ultimate ambition is for me to be called into the senior team.

“I can still play at under-23 level for a further five years, so I want to keep performing for them and see where it takes me.

“A lot of the group can remain at under-23 level for a few years yet, so we want to build and have as much success as possible.”

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