Pople Set To Impress at Birmingham

Posted on July 13, 2022 by

NSWIS scholarship holder Luke Pople has been named on the men’s 3×3 Para basketball team today bound for the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games.

31-year-old Luke from Dapto in NSW was born with spina bifida and was a member of the Australian Rollers gold medal-winning team at the Asian Games in Incheon in 2014.

“I’m very excited and proud to be selected in this team, especially with it being the first-ever wheelchair basketball competition at the Commonwealth Games,” Luke said.

“I cannot wait to get over there and start!”

Luke forms part of a 16-strong basketball squad that will represent Australia in the inaugural 3×3 basketball format across both wheelchair and able-bodied men’s and women’s competitions.

“It’s not everyday you get to pull on the green and gold jersey and represent Australia, so it’s pretty special,” Luke said.

Luke will combine with Lachlin Dalton, who at 21 years old is the youngest member of the basketball squad.

A 2.5-point classified player, Dalton was born with osteogenesis imperfecta, a condition which means that his bones can break easily, but this hasn’t stopped him from his promising basketball career.

Dalton’s fellow Queenslander Kurt Thomson, 40, brings great experience to this team, while the other men’s Para selection, Jake Kavanagh, is one of five West Australians going to Birmingham.

Commonwealth Games Australia Team Chef de Mission Petria Thomas OAM welcomed the basketball athletes who are the final Team Members bound for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games later this month.

“I’m thrilled for these 16 Team Members, 15 of them are first-time Commonwealth Games Team Members joined by Jesse Wagstaff who won gold in 5×5 basketball on the Gold Coast!” Thomas said.

“3×3 Basketball and 3×3 Wheelchair Basketball continue to be two of the fastest-growing sports across the Commonwealth and the world, and it is wonderful to have the sport debuting at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.”

“I am excited for these Aussie Team Members to have the opportunity to showcase the rapid and energetic version of basketball to international audiences… I know I can’t wait to see it live and be cheering on the green and gold from the stands.”

“Today’s selections to the Australian Team bring our total team size to 435, our largest Team for an overseas Commonwealth Games, I know they’re all going to be bold in gold in Birmingham.”

Basketball Australia CEO Matt Scriven said this new format will be a hit with spectators around the world.

“We are excited that basketball 3×3 will make its debut at the Commonwealth Games. The 3×3 format continues to grow with more competitions and athletes playing than ever before,” he said.

“We think the fans are really going to embrace this fast-paced format and enjoy watching our able-bodied and wheelchair teams go for gold.”

Article courtesy of Commonwealth Games Australia

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