Lothian Open Boccia Championships 2016
The Jack Kane Centre once again played host to the Lothian Open Boccia Championships and welcomed 50 players from around Scotland to compete over four sections. Players travelled from the West of Scotland, Dumfries & Galloway and Forth Valley and helped the strong Lothian contingent contribute to an excellent day of boccia.
There was fierce competition throughout the day in class A (players with physical disability) with experienced players in all three of the sections and it was Lucy Rutledge, Ross Munro (both West of Scotland Boccia), Arthur Lawson (No Limits) and Callum Glasgow (Right on Target) who shone through and qualified for the semi finals. At this stage, the two players from the West met with Ross narrowly triumphing 4-3 after the four ends of play. The other semi final saw No Limts player Arthur Lawson defeat Forth Valley’s Callum Glasgow and set up an exciting East / West final. A very close match saw Ross Munro claim the title with a 5-4 victory and leave Arthur Lawson with a silver medal and Lucy Rutledge with a bronze after defeating Glasgow in the 3rd/ 4th playoff match.
Similar to class A, the class for players with a learning disability was hotly contested with some impressive boccia being played throughout. In the male section, the Right on Target players were well represented in the at the semi final stage with Darren Rooney and Lee Duncan qualifying alongside Daniel Strang (No Limits) and Faizan Haq (Edinburgh Leisure High Flyers) from a competitive group stage. It was Rooney and Strang who defeated Haq and Duncan respectively to qualify for the final stage of the competition and it was the No Limits player who claimed victory after a tense final. The semi final stage in the female section was dominated by Lothian players as three from the four were local to the competition however it was Right on Target player Barbara Anne McGinn who qualified for the final after defeating Jodie Lavin (LSO). McGinn was joined by Philippa Robertson (LSO) as she defeated last year’s winner Kirsty McCallum (No Limits) in the other semi final and maintaining the record of having a Lothian player in each final at this year’s competition. Philippa Robertson equalled Daniel Strang’s achievement in the male section, winning the trophy and keeping the title in the Lothian region.
Class C saw four players using assistive devices battle it out in a round robin format with the player recording the most points being declared the winner. It was Sean McCann who made home advantage count as the East of Scotland Boccia club player used his experience and played well throughout, defeating Aaryn Widd (Forth Valley), Connor Meechan (Forth Valley) and Andrew Douglas (Edinburgh Leisure High Flyers) to claim the top spot - Aaryn Widd securing second and Connor Meechan third.
The junior section saw an increase in entry from the previous two years, with four groups of players pitting their skills against their peers from across the region and indeed the country. It was Dumfries & Galloway who took full advantage with the final stage being contested by two players from the region. Christian Mason and Hayden Keir – the two players who were winner and runner up last year – battled it out with the latter coming out on top and claiming the gold medal. LSO youngster Chloe Ewens claimed third sport with her debut at the competition.
A full list of first, second and third placed players can be found below –
Class A – Players with a Physical Disability
Gold: Ross Munro (West of Scotland Boccia)
Silver: Arthur Lawson (No Limts)
Bronze: Lucy Rutledge (West of Scotland Boccia)
Class B – Players with a Learning Disability (Male)
Gold: Daniel Strang (No Limits)
Silver: Darren Rooney (Right on Target Boccia Club)
Bronze: Faizan Haq (Edinburgh Leisure High Flyers)
Class B – Players with a Learning Disability (Female)
Gold: Philippa Robertson (LSO)
Silver: Barbara Anne McGinn (Right on Target Boccia Club)
Bronze: Jodie Lavin (LSO)
Class C – Players using Assistive Devices
Gold: Sean McCann (East of Scotland Boccia Club)
Silver: Aaryn Widd (Right on Target Boccia Club)
Bronze: Connor Meechan (Right on Target Boccia Club)
Class D – Junior Players under the age of 18 (all disability groups)
Gold: Hayden Keir (Dumfries & Galloway)
Silver: Christian Mason (Dumfries & Galloway)
Bronze: Chloe Ewens (LSO)
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. Finally, a special thank you to Scottish Disability Sport’s Coaching Future’s Boccia Apprentice, Lewis McCulloch who was on hand to provide his experience throughout and also expertly present the medals at the end of the day.