Maclean celebrates Paralympic selection

THERE was both relief and despair for Sudbury-based wheelchair basketball club Eastern Blue Stars when the Great Britain Paralympics squad was announced.

Caroline Maclean was celebrating her inclusion for her fourth Games this summer, but founder of the Sudbury national league side, Sible Hedingham’s Emily Scrivener, was not included after being part of the training team.

For Haverhill-based Maclean, the recent disappointment of Manchester’s poor BT Paralympic World Cup was soon tempered by the exhilaration of knowing she will get a chance to shine on the greatest stage of all.

“It’s very exciting to have made the squad, but is very nerve-racking as well,” she said. “I’m proud to still be in the team.”

And the 37-year-old is now hoping to use the home advantage to bring home the ultimate prize to her club side.

“In previous years there has not been a lot of expectation, but this year people expect us to win a medal – we will do our absolute best,” she said.

GB will face the Netherlands, Canada, Brazil and Australia in one group, while the other will consist of China, USA, France, Mexico and Germany.

Four teams from each group will go through to a quarter-final stage following the group round.

Maclean added: “We’re really confident as we’ve just seen three of the top teams in the world and know we could beat all of them.”