Story 33: Wheelchair Rugby
Today on “40 Years, 40 Stories, 40 Days,” we begin a series of profiles on individual BCWSA member sports and the athletes, coaches and builders who have impacted that sport’s development in BC. We’re starting with wheelchair rugby.
Even though “murderball” was born in Manitoba, BC has been a powerhouse for much of its history. In fact, Team BC has won the Canadian national championships an incredible 16 times in 32 years. This winning record has no doubt been thanks to celebrated BC athletes like Garett Hickling and Ian Chan and coaches like Adam Frost and Marty Rush.
With new programs starting every year — Squamish and Nanaimo are the most recent clubs to get on board — there are more and more opportunities for today’s wheelchair rugby players across the province.
Profile: Duncan Campbell
Though Duncan Campbell is from Manitoba, he moved to BC in the 1980s and has been a driving force in the wheelchair rugby community ever since. This makes sense, since he’s one of the founders of murderball and is known as the “Quadfather.” Through his work at GF Strong and Bridging the Gap, Duncan has introduced countless athletes to wheelchair rugby. You’d be hard-pressed to find a BC wheelchair rugby athlete who doesn’t count Duncan as one of the reasons he or she either got involved in the sport or stayed involved. Duncan is also active in the International Wheelchair Rugby Federation, ensuring that the sport remains on the right track as it develops around the world.
Below, we’ve created a slideshow of some of the best wheelchair rugby shots from around BC. You can also see some more great wheelchair rugby images in our story on the 2010 World Wheelchair Rugby Championships: