Summer Sports

Ben Fawcett

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Quick Facts

Disability
Quadriplegia
How acquired
Snowboarding accident
Date of Birth
Mon, 31/12/1990
Home
Coimadai, VIC
Occupation
Administration Officer at Protect
Started Competing
2010
First Competed for Australia
2013
Heroes
Travis Pastrana, Muhammad Ali, Shane Crawford
Career Highlights
Being named low point four at Brisbane Bash back to back 2012/13. Rookie of the year 2012.
Greatest Moment
2008 AFL Grand Final

Bio

Ben Fawcett was on a snowboarding holiday in New Zealand when his life changed forever. Just a few hours into the trip, the then 19-year-old was snowboarding down a mountain when he took a jump, landed badly and broke his neck.

Ben discovered wheelchair rugby while in rehabilitation at Royal Talbot and knew it was the sport for him. He threw himself into it and has been training with the Australian squad since the beginning of 2013. He will make his Australian debut at the Be the Influence Wheelchair Rugby Tri-Nations in Sydney against the USA and New Zealand.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Disciplines: Wheelchair rugby

Curtis Palmer

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Quick Facts

Disability
Quadriplegia
How acquired
Rugby league tackle
Date of Birth
Sun, 08/05/1977
Home
Beaumaris, VIC
Occupation
Athlete
Started Competing
1993
First Competed for Australia
1993
Games Experience
Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008
Heroes
Mike Letch OAM. Kelly Slater, William Trubridge, Jason Bridges
Career Highlights
Winning gold for NZ at Athens 2004; being named best 2.5 player at the 2010 World Championships
Greatest Moment
John Maclean completing the Hawaiian Iron Man, Kurt Fearnley completing the Kokoda Trail, Oscar Pistorius competing at the Olympic Games, Jacqui Freney’s eight gold medals in London 2012, Kelly Slater winning his 11th World Title and William Trubridge free-diving to 101m.

Bio

For most of Curtis Palmer’s international wheelchair rugby career, he competed for his adopted country of New Zealand after moving there from Australia as a 19-year-old. As part of the once world dominating WheelBlacks, Curtis tasted success at the highest level. He was instrumental in New Zealand’s gold medal victory at the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games, and was also part of the teams that won bronze medals at Atlanta 1996 and Sydney 2000.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Disciplines: Wheelchair rugby
Classification: 2.5

Will Marshall

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Quick Facts

Disability
Cerebral palsy
How acquired
Birth
Date of Birth
Thu, 20/06/1996
Home
Norman Park, QLD
Occupation
Student
Started Competing
2006
First Competed for Australia
2013
Career Highlights
Winning the BC1 singles title at the 2010 National Championships
Greatest Moment
Going to his first State of Origin game and watching Queensland smash New South Wales

Bio

There is nothing Will Marshall loves more than watching his beloved Queensland beat New South Wales in the NRL’s State of Origin. As a sports lover, Will loves watching all sport, particularly the Brisbane Broncos and the Australian cricket team, and one day he hopes to represent Australia on the biggest stage for boccia, the Paralympic Games.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC1
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Teams
Classification: BC1-BC2

Tait Jenkins

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Quick Facts

Disability
Spinal muscular atrophy type 2
How acquired
Birth
Date of Birth
Tue, 06/08/1996
Home
Modanville, NSW
Occupation
Student
Started Competing
2011
First Competed for Australia
2013
Heroes
His father
Career Highlights
Winning the 2012 Nationals as ‘the young guns’
Greatest Moment
Winning the 2012 Nationals as ‘the young guns’

Bio

Tait Jenkins is one of the brightest developing stars on the Australian boccia squad. Born with spinal muscular atrophy, Tait competes in the BC3 class using an assistance ramp and often comes face to face with his friend and fellow player, Daniel Michel.

Although he only took up boccia in 2011 as a way to meet new people and hopefully excel in a sport with no boundaries, he has found quick success with his keen eye, cool nerve and steady hand, leading him to victory at the 2012 and 2013 National Boccia Championships.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC3
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Pairs
Classification: BC3

Scott Elsworth

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Quick Facts

Disability
Cerebral palsy spastic quadriplegia
How acquired
Birth
Home
Bayview, NSW
Occupation
Sports administration
Started Competing
1991
First Competed for Australia
1993
Games Experience
Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000
Heroes
Kurt Fearnley
Career Highlights
Finishing 5th at Sydney 2000
Greatest Moment
Watching Kieran Perkins win gold in the 1500m at the Atlanta Olympics and watching Kurt Fearnley win multiple medals

Bio

Scott Elsworth is one of two boccia athletes on the current Australian squad to have competed at a Paralympic Games. Having competed at both the Atlanta 1996 and Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games, Scott’s experience is invaluable to the other members of the Australian boccia squad who are yet to compete at the Paralympic level.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC2
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Teams
Classification: BC1-BC2

Mecenzi Howard

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Quick Facts

Disability
Spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy
How acquired
Birth
Date of Birth
Tue, 25/03/1997
Home
Horsley, NSW
Occupation
Student
Started Competing
2010
First Competed for Australia
2013
Heroes
Paralympic swimmer Matt Cowdrey, plane crash survivor, author and pilot Allana Arnot Corbin and boccia players Barry Fear and Scott Elsworth
Career Highlights
Winning gold at the 2012 Junior Titles, 2013 NSW State Titles and 2013 National Championships and being selected to the boccia Paralympic Preparation Program
Greatest Moment
Being selected for the NSW team to play at the 2010 National Championships

Bio

When Mecenzi Howard was born, no one thought she would live. Born with spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy, Mecenzi suffered brain damage in the last few weeks before she was born and at four days old, went into respiratory arrest.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC1
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Teams
Classification: BC1-BC2

Lachlan Kavanagh

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Quick Facts

Disability
Cerebral palsy
How acquired
Birth
Date of Birth
Thu, 01/09/1988
Home
Carindale, QLD
Started Competing
2004
First Competed for Australia
2005
Heroes
Lawn bowls players Kelsey Cottrell and Karen Murphy and boccia player Nigel Murray
Career Highlights
Winning the BC2 singles title at the 2011 National Championships
Greatest Moment
Representing Australia

Bio

Queensland’s Lachlan Kavanagh has three goals in life – to enjoy life, be healthy and become a Paralympian. As one of the longest serving athletes on the Australian boccia squad and one of the few athletes to have represented Australia internationally, Lachlan is working towards what will hopefully be his first Paralympic Games in Rio 2016.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC2
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Teams
Classification: BC1-BC2

Jason Mayweather

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Quick Facts

Disability
Cerebral palsy – spastic diplegia
How acquired
Birth
Date of Birth
Tue, 28/06/1983
Home
Bowen Hills, QLD
Occupation
QLD Cerebral Palsy League Casual Simulation Actor
Started Competing
2012
First Competed for Australia
2013
Heroes
His mother and grandparents
Career Highlights
Being asked to join the Boccia Paralympic Preparation Program
Greatest Moment
Muhummed Ali against George Foreman in Rumble in the Jungle

Bio

Jason Mayweather is a sports-mad Queenslander who loves his boxing and rugby league. Born with cerebral palsy which limited his ability to pursue both sports competitively, Jason has channelled his love of sport into the uniquely Paralympic sport of boccia.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC2
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Teams
Classification: BC1-BC2

Fiona Lyons

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Quick Facts

Disability
Cerebral palsy
How acquired
Birth
Date of Birth
Sun, 19/10/1986
Home
Cleveland, QLD
Started Competing
2001
First Competed for Australia
2006
Career Highlights
Going undefeated to win gold at the 2009 state and national titles, winning the Boccia Australia President’s Most Improved Athlete award in 2009 and QLD Sporting Wheelies Most Improved Female Athlete in 2009
Greatest Moment
Captaining the Australian BC1-BC2 Team at the Asia Oceania Regional Championships

Bio

Fiona Lyons thought boccia was for the elderly and for years, did not want a bar of it despite people constantly suggesting she take up the sport. When she was 15, she finally relented and gave the sport a go. She hasn’t looked back since.

In 2006 she captained the BC1-BC2 Team at the Asia Oceania Regional Championships and enjoyed domestic success in 2009 where she remained undefeated at the state and national titles and won Boccia Australia’s Most Improved Athlete award and QLD Sporting Wheelies Most Improved Female Athlete award.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC2
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Teams
Classification: BC1-BC2

Dean Nottle

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Quick Facts

Disability
Inclusion body myositis
How acquired
Degenerative muscle disease
Date of Birth
Fri, 23/05/1952
Home
Yattalunga, NSW
Occupation
Book editor
Started Competing
2011
First Competed for Australia
2013
Heroes
Sydney Swans player Brett Kirk
Career Highlights
Being named captain of the Australian Para-boccia squad
Greatest Moment
Being in the crowd for both the Sydney Swans 2005 AFL Premiership win and Cathy Freeman winning gold at Sydney 2000

Bio

Thoughtful and considered are two words fellow athletes would use to describe Dean Nottle, whose goal in life is to be the best he can be.

The 60-year-old, who is passionate about living life to its fullest, developed a degenerative muscle disease later in life and in 2011, took up boccia as a way to be involved with sport where he wasn’t scoring or timekeeping.  

Since then, he has been training with New South Wales boccia coaches in Woy Woy on the state’s central coast and hopes to make his Australian debut soon.

Sport & Disciplines

Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Individual
Classification: BC4
Sport: Boccia
Disciplines: Pairs
Classification: BC4