This year, [EN]GAGE Sports Centre at Edinburgh Napier University played host to the Lothian Open Boccia Championships and welcomed over 50 players from around Scotland to compete over three sections. Players travelled from the Borders, Dundee, Dumfries & Galloway, Forth Valley and West of Scotland, helping the strong Lothian contingent contribute to an excellent day of competitive boccia.
There was tough competition throughout the day in class A (players with physical disability) with some great play in all four of the groups. It was Fiona Muirhead (Individual), Tyler McLelland (Fife), Fiona Hagenbuch (No Limits) and Arthur Lawson (No Limits) who shone through and qualified for the semi finals. The semi finals were tense, but eventually it was Fiona Muirhead and Tyler McLelland who emerged as winners, beating Fiona Hagenbuch and Arthur Lawson respectively.
In an exciting final, it was Fiona Muirhead who came out on top to become class A champion for 2018.
The Class B section (for players with a learning disability) provided similar action and was closely contested, with some impressive boccia being played throughout both the male and female side of the draw.
In the male section, Hayden Keir (D&G), Lee Duncan (Right on Target) and Daniel Strang qualified for the semi finals as winners of their groups and were joined by Brian Boardman (Borders) as the best placed runner up. Hayden and Lee faced off in the final, where Hayden took home the gold in a match where the quality of play was not reflective of the 5-0 score.
Once again, the semi final stage in the female section was dominated by Lothian players as three from the four were local to the competition. The three LSO athletes were joined by Rebekah Perry (Dundee) who progressed to the final where she faced off against Jodie Lavin (LSO). In a tight came, which came down to the final end Rebekah took the win 4-2.
The junior section saw some excellent competition as the country’s under 18s pitted their skills against their peers from around Scotland. It was Dundee’s Alex Medley who took advantage of this year’s group winner format, his consistent display enough to take the title. Alex was pushed all the way by Kyle Latto (Dundee) and Abi Johnston (D&G) who took home the silver and bronze respectively.
A full list of first, second and third placed players can be found below –
Class A – Players with a Physical Disability
Gold: Fiona Muirhead (Individual)
Silver: Tyler McLelland (Fife)
Bronze: Arthur Lawson / Fiona Hagenbuch (No Limits)
Class B – Players with a Learning Disability (Male)
Gold: Hayden Keir (Dumfries & Galloway)
Silver: Lee Duncan (Right on Target)
Bronze: Daniel Strang (No Limits) / Brian Boardman (Borders)
Class B – Players with a Learning Disability (Female)
Gold: Rebekah Perry (Dundee)
Silver: Jodie Lavin (LSO)
Bronze: Kim Burnett / Lisa Wilkie (LSO)
Class D – Junior Players under the age of 18 (all disability groups)
Gold: Alex Medley (Dundee)
Silver: Kyle Latto (Dundee)
Bronze: Abi Johnston (Dumfries & Galloway)
I would like to thank all players and coaches for travelling to the competition and making it a success. I would also like to extend a sincere thank you to all individuals who assisted with refereeing / time keeping / results table - the competition could not run without your much needed and appreciated support.