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Australia will be represented by two World Champions and a bright up-and-comer at the Women’s Cup in Paris, starting on Thursday, the only international event exclusively for women in wheelchair rugby. 

Shae Graham and Ella Sabljak played key roles in the Australian Steelers side that secured a stunning win at the World Championships in Denmark last October.

They will be joined at the tournament at Centre Sportif Émile Anthoine in central Paris by Australian Development team player Rubie Gallagher. 

The Cup will feature full squads from Great Britain and Canada and the Aussie trio will integrate into teams composed of players from Europe, the US and South Korea. 

“It’s been so encouraging to see more women involved in Paralympics Australia’s wheelchair rugby elite program,” Australian Paralympic Team Chef de Mission Kate McLoughlin said. 

“It was a really proud moment when Shae became the first woman to represent the Steelers at a Paralympic Games at Tokyo 2020 and barely a year later we had three women in the team that won the World Championship: Shae, Ella and also Emilie Miller.

“[Steelers’ coach] Brad Dubberley said they not only played well but added a vital dimension to the team culture, which was one of the keys to that incredible win. 

“Our message continues to be that wheelchair rugby is a sport that has no gender boundaries. It’s open to all and is a great sport to follow and play.”

Wheelchair rugby is a mixed-gender sport at Paralympic level. The World Championships featured a record 13 women. 

By: David Sygall, Paralympics Australia
Posted: 8 March 2023