While watching the Aussie Belles compete at the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games, Tyan Taylor promised her grandmother that she too would represent Australia in goalball at a future Paralympic Games.
In 2009 her vision support teacher was shown a demonstration goalball match as a way of introducing the sport to schools and it was then that Tyan was given the opportunity to begin working towards the goal that she had set nine years earlier.
Not long after participating at a ‘Goalball for Schools’ gala day, Tyan was selected to represent New South Wales at the National Championships, where she scored the second highest number of goals of any competitor and impressed the Australian coaching staff so much she was invited to train with the women’s national team.
Tyan made her international debut at the 2011 IBSA World Championships and Games in Antalya, Turkey. Scoring her first ever international goal, she was named her side’s most valuable player.
At the 2012 Paralympic Games in London, the Aussie Belles lost all four preliminary matches, placing fifth behind Canada, Japan, Sweden and the United States.
In the lead-up to Rio, Tyan looked to retired Paralympic swimmer Sarah Rose for inspiration, explaining that Sarah has always provided invaluable advice on how best to maintain a healthy work-life balance.
Originally the Belles weren’t selected to compete at Rio 2016, only receiving the call-up when Russia was banned from the Games due to widespread doping. There they achieved one better than London, tying 2-2 in their match against the Ukraine. Unfortunately, the point differential saw the Australian team again place fifth behind Turkey, China, Canada and the Ukraine.
Nicknamed ‘little girl’, Tyan more than makes up for her size with her loud personality. She says that the most important thing for her in her sporting career is to always have fun.
In her spare time Tyan enjoys skydiving and travelling. She says that she relishes the opportunities she has been given to travel with the Australian women’s goalball team and lists Bora Bora as her destination of choice, though she is yet to visit.
In 10 years Tyan hopes to have competed at another Paralympic Games, her own family and to be working as a vision support teacher.