Accessible Sport Committee, London & Area
News & Updates

Local Team Canada Boccia athletes take on the nation at “Boccia Blast 2010”

October 8, 2010

The London Cannonballs Boccia Club will proudly host the 20th annual “Boccia Blast” Friday, September 24- Sunday, September 26th , 2010 . The North London Optimist Community Centre (Highbury and Cheapside Streets) will be the site for their largest competition ever. Forty Canadian athletes from coast to coast are currently registered for the competition, including some from British Columbia and New Brunswick. The founder of the “Boccia Blast” in 1990, Debbie Willows, will be returning to celebrate the anniversary. Debbie is a former paralympic swimmer from London who will referee some of the Boccia Games on the weekend.

Boccia athletes are registered in single, double and team events over the 3 day competition. The event is sanctioned by both the Ontario Cerebral Palsy Sports Association (O.C.P.S.A.) and the Canadian Cerebral Palsy Sports Association (C.C.P.S.A.) and attracts athletes of all ability levels. Indoor Boccia is played on a 12.5m x 6m court, using red and blue balls that are soft and made of leather, as well as a white “jack” ball which is their target. There are several categories of player designations based on physical mobility. Some players are permitted the use of a ramp and may direct an assistant to move the ramp to their desired target. The player, or team, whose ball lands closest to the jack ball after scores a point. The player with the highest score at the end of 4 ends (6 ends for teams of 6 players) wins the game.

Two exceptionally gifted local Boccia athletes who represented Canada at the Beijing Paralympic Games in 2008 will be competing at the “Boccia Blast” this year. The captain of Team Canada, Adam Dukovich from London, is expected to achieve great success on the heels of his recent achievements in both the Ontario Provincial and World Boccia Championships this past spring. At one of the largest World Championships held in Portugal in June, Adam won a bronze medal, where over 30 countries were represented. Adam then topped his third place finish at the World’s with a gold medal at the Ontario Provincial Boccia competition in Toronto.

Tammy McLeod, also from London, is currently a member of Team Canada’s Espoir Squad. Tammy recently won a silver medal at the Ontario Provincial Boccia competition and she has high expectations for success in this competition as well.

All of the athletes are inspired by crowds of cheering spectators, so come out to the North London Optimist Community Centre on the weekend of September 24-26 to watch some amazing, inspiring athletes compete against the nation’s best. Volunteers are always needed and appreciated. Secondary students may complete some of their required hours for school at this event. If you’re interested in helping out, please contact the “Boccia Blast” organizers at: .