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Morapedi, Jordaan and Dakin off to Rio for World Boccia World Championships

The para-athletes will be representing South Africa from 5 to 13 December at the Rio de Janeiro 2022 Boccia World Championships.

Team SA heads to the World Boccia World championships in Rio de Janeiro. Picture: SASAPD/Instagram.

JOHANNESBURG – South Africa is sending three of its top para-athletes to the World Boccia World championships in Rio de Janeiro.

Elanza Jordaan, Karabo Morapedi, and Brett Dakin will be representing the country from 5 – 13 December at the Rio de Janeiro 2022 Boccia World Championships in Barra da Tijuca.

Boccia is a game designed specifically for athletes with a disability affecting their locomotor function.

More than 170 athletes from 41 countries have been confirmed to take part.

Boccia – introduced in 1984, when only 19 athletes represented five different countries, is now practised in more than 75 countries worldwide, and it has no Olympic counterpart.

READ: SA to host Africa’s first World Boccia Africa Regional Championships

SA Boccia para-athlete Elanza Jordaan. Picture: SASAPD/Instagram.

“My dream is to represent South Africa at the Paralympic Games. My goals are to practice hard and to participate in as many Boccia competitions as possible. I hope to inspire younger Boccia athletes to participate and enjoy Boccia as much as I do. When my mom (who is my ramp assistant) and I retire from Boccia, we want to start introducing the game to old age homes and schools that don’t know about Boccia in the Western Cape,” said Jordaan.

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SA Boccia para-athleteKarabo Morapedi . Picture: SASAPD/Instagram.

Morapedi’s goal is to get his Diploma in Public Management and show people that disabled people can also achieve what they want in their lives.

“My dream is to be successful and be an inspiration to many people who don’t have confidence and don’t believe in themselves. My goals in Boccia are to win a lot of gold medals in the National Championships and my dream is to go to the Paralympics to represent South Africa,” he said.

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SA Boccia para-athlete Brett Dakin . Picture: SASAPD/Instagram.

“My main goal is to reach and compete in the next Paralympics in Paris 2024. It has always been my dream to compete in the Paralympics one day,” said Dakin.

The competition, organised and hosted by the National Association of Sports for the Disabled (ANDE) which manages the modality in Brazil, will be broadcasted on YouTube from four courts.

According to the championship’s official website, there has been a historic number of volunteers for this year’s sporting event.

“Even before the competition starts: some numbers are already historic: more than 300 applications in less than a week to apply for the 40 vacancies in the Volunteer Program, managed by Sports Network, and the popular election for the name of the mascot (Dibo), which is a tribute to the greatest Brazilian medallist in this sport.”

The mascot has been named in honour of four-time Paralympic gold medallist Dirceu Pinto – who died from heart failure aged 39 in 2020.

Dibo is a mixture of his name – Dirceu and the sport at which he excelled – boccia.

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