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July 25, 2012

Wikinews interviews Great Britain men\’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock

Wikinews interviews Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Homebush Bay, New South Wales — Wikinews sat down with Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock before a practice session at the Rollers & Gliders World Challenge in Sydney.

Pollock during the interview
Image: Bidgee.

Wikinews reporter LauraHale interviewing Pollock
Image: Bidgee.

Pollock showing his tattoos
Image: Bidgee.

Wikinews reporters LauraHale and Bidgee interview Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Joni Pollock

British-born Pollock was born with the condition spina bifida. He explained he could walk with difficulty up until age twelve or thirteen, after which he began using a wheelchair. Shortly after this, he began playing wheelchair basketball. He attended a disabilities tournament for children with disabilities in England, where he tried both wheelchair basketball, since he came from a town where team sports were popular; and wheelchair tennis, as he’d played with an able-bodied friend. Ultimately, he chose wheelchair basketball as it was a team sport.

Wikinews asked Pollock about being loud towards his team mates during the match on July 20 between the Australian Rollers and the Great Britain Bulldogs. He said he was out of wheelchair basketball for nine months due to a pressure sore and surgery on his shoulder, and has been making a comeback since January, with the doctors and physiotherapists giving him the all-clear in April. On that night, he said, the Australian team used bullying tactics and some of his teammates on the British team didn’t step up to win the game. He also said that no matter what team his team plays against, he has a target on his back because of his calibre of playing in the game, and his team failed to to understand it that night, leaving him frustrated with his team and himself; and, he hates coming to Australia during a Paralympic year since the home town —that is, Australian— referees do not protect the visiting team from the home team’s dirty playing, which puts the British team’s gold medal prospects in jeopardy.

Wikinews also asked Pollock his opinions regarding Oscar Pistorius. Pollock believes Pistorius shouldn’t be competing in the Olympics if other Paralympic athletes can’t compete. He also mentioned reservations about certain technical aspects, such as whether Pistorius would be the same height if he still had his legs rather then his prosthetic legs. Asked about 5 point players playing in wheelchair basketball, he said he believes 5 point players can play with other point players but not in the Paralympics, and said 5 point players currently play in the domestic league but not at the elite level, to boost the number of players participating and to help the development of the game.

Wikinews also questioned him about tattoos worn by members of the British team. In previous years, he said, only one or two forwards had tattoos, but now almost everyone has one as having tattoos is currently in fashion. He said he got his first tattoo at the age of sixteen and only recently had it removed. He also has tattoos on his right arm, depicting the logos of the Paralympics and World championships in which he competed.

Pollocks’s team begins its London campaign on August 30, against the Germany men’s national wheelchair basketball team.



Related news

  • “Australian Rollers roll over Great Britain men’s wheelchair basketball team” — Wikinews, July 19, 2012

Sources

Wikinews
This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.


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This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

July 24, 2012

Wikinews interviews Great Britain men\’s national wheelchair basketball player Ade Oregembe

Wikinews interviews Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Ade Oregembe

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Homebush Bay, New South Wales —

Wikinews sat down with Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Ade Oregembe before a practice session at the Rollers & Gliders World Challenge in Sydney.

Wikinews reporters LauraHale and Bidgee interview Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball player Ade Oregembe

Oregembe during the interview
Image: Bidgee.

Wikinews reporter LauraHale interviewing Oregembe
Image: Bidgee.

Nigerian-born Oregembe, one of twenty-four children, contracted polio when an infant. He started playing basketball after a random person suggested he take up the sport. Oregembe stated he’d never previously seriously considered any other sport. His wheelchair basketball journey has taken him to Spain (to play in their local league) and around the world with the Great Britain national team.

Oregembe was asked about two of the big Paralympic stories: Oscar Pistorius, and 5 point players —able-bodied competitors— competing in their sport at the Paralympics. He did not support Pistorius’s inclusion in the Olympics, nor inclusion of able-bodied athletes in wheelchair basketball at the Paralympics.

While the United Kingdom has a reputation for sport-related racism, Oregembe said he had not experienced much of it on the courts. Elsewhere though, it was a different issue as he had experienced racism both to his face and behind his back, noting it was a particular problem in Spain.

Oregembe’s Great Britain side kicks off their London campaign on August 30 against the Germany men’s national wheelchair basketball team.

Related news

  • “Australian Rollers roll over Great Britain men’s wheelchair basketball team” — Wikinews, July 19, 2012

Sources

Wikinews
This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.


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This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

July 22, 2012

Australia Rollers victorious against Great Britain men\’s national wheelchair basketball team

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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Homebush Bay, New South Wales —

Australian wheelchairs before the game
Image: LauraHale.

Dan Highcock passes the ball
Image: LauraHale.

Justin Eveson for Australia and Ade Oregembe for Great Britain
Image: LauraHale.

Ade Oregembe for Great Britain
Image: LauraHale.

Brad Ness went down
Image: LauraHale.

Australia’s number 6 Brett Stibners and 9 Tristan Knowles. Great Britain’s number 10 is Abdi Jama.
Image: LauraHale.

Terry Bywater of Great Britain heads down the court
Image: LauraHale.

In yesterday’s men’s first place final at the Rollers & Gliders World Challenge at the Sport Centre at the Sydney Olympic Park, the Australian Rollers beat the Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball team 70–64.

Like the preceding game featuring Australia’s women that was only won in the fourth quarter, this match was close until the very end. Australia won the tip but spent much of the first quarter tied with Great Britain. The two teams were tied at 4–4 with 7:33 in the first, and 10–10 with 3:16 left in the first. Australia took a narrow 15–13 lead into second quarter. Australia held a narrow lead during the second quarter, taking only a one point lead of 30–29 into the half. Australia managed to get a five point lead of 44–39 with 3:10 left in the third. They held onto this lead at the end of the third with the score sitting at 48–42. The fourth quarter saw both teams in foul trouble, with five plus personal fouls each by the last minute of the game. Great Britain lost their composure at one point, with players loudly arguing with each other on court. With 0:18 left in the game, Australia had a six point lead with the score sitting at 68–62 following a pair of missed free throws by Great Britain’s Joni Pollock. Great Britain was unable to stage a last minute comeback and Australia held on to win 70–64.

The Rollers and Great Britain are both bound for the London Paralympics next month.



Related news

  • “Australian Gliders squeak out first place victory over Germany women’s national wheelchair team” — Wikinews, July 21, 2012
  • “Australian Gliders glide past China women’s national wheelchair basketball team” — Wikinews, July 20, 2012
  • “Australian Rollers roll over Great Britain men’s wheelchair basketball team” — Wikinews, July 19, 2012
  • “Australian Gliders beat Germany women’s national wheelchair basketball team on day two of Rollers & Gliders World Challenge” — Wikinews, July 19, 2012

Sources

Wikinews
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.


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This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

July 19, 2012

Australian Rollers roll over Great Britain men\’s wheelchair basketball team

Australian Rollers roll over Great Britain men’s wheelchair basketball team

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Homebush Bay, New South Wales —

Bill Latham of Australia warms up before the game
Image: LauraHale.

Grant Mizens of Australia warms up before the game
Image: LauraHale.

Dylan Alcott of Australia warms up before the game
Image: LauraHale.

Australia and Great Britain listen as their national anthems are played
Image: LauraHale.

Shaun Norris shoots a free throw
Image: LauraHale.

Ade Oregembe of Great Britain fends off Michael Hartnett of Australia
Image: LauraHale.

Ade Oregembe of Great Britain on the ground and in pain
Image: LauraHale.

Abdi James of Great Britain makes a shot
Image: LauraHale.

In a closely fought game Thursday night between the Australian Rollers and the Great Britain men’s national wheelchair basketball team at the Sport Centre at the Sydney Olympic Park, Australia rolled away as 65–51 victors.

The Australians, many with facial hair, met the partially tattooed Great Britain side with a lot of aggression and sometimes borderline violence on the court. Wheelchairs rammed into each other with much greater frequency than in the previous match played between the Australian and German women. Both teams were very vocal on the court and on the bench, loudly telling their teammates what to do or occasionally arguing with the referees. Bench players on both teams demonstrated a lack of creativity in their sideline chanting, with the Rollers chanting “Defense. Rollers. Defense.” and the Great Britain side chanting “Defense. Defense.” The Great Britain side, initially very loud from the bench following a 37–33 half time lead, got quieter as the game progressed. With 6:22 left in the fourth quarter, the game appeared to have gotten away from the referees who answered by calling a technical against Great Britain after one of the Australian players ended up on his back on the court. The call followed a fan screaming from the stands that the game was not supposed to be a contact sport. Following the siren to end the game, both sides shook hands.

Australia plays their last game in pool play in the Rollers & Gliders World Challenge at 7:30pm Sydney time Friday against Japan while Great Britain meets Japan at 12:00pm Sydney time Friday. All three teams are London bound for the Paralympics next month.



Sources

Wikinews
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.


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This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.