Debutant Nicholas Scott has been named in the 12-strong Australian wheelchair rugby squad after recently transitioning to the sport from wheelchair basketball.
Coach of the Aussie Steelers Brad Dubberley said the selection of the NSW Institute of Sport wheelchair basketball scholarship holder will be another intriguing plot line at the tournament.
Scott is an elite wheelchair basketballer and has been pushing his claim for Australian Rollers selection in recent years. His decision to move across to try wheelchair rugby in recent months is an exciting boost for the Steelers.
Paralympics Australia and Basketball Australia collaborated on Scott’s transition after it became evident that he was not a high likelihood of selection for the Rollers’ Tokyo campaign.
“Nick has many skills that transfer quite easily from wheelchair basketball. He obviously has great chair skills and great vision on court. But he is on a steep learning curve right now about the finer points of our sport,” Dubberley said.
“We still have a lot of work to do to optimise his chair setup and build combinations but already we are seeing some promising signs from him.”
Australia open their Asia Oceania Championship campaign against Thailand (September 6) before clashing with New Zealand (September 6), South Korea (September 7) and Japan (September 8). The top qualifier will move directly into the gold medal match on September 9 and will meet whoever emerges from the semi-final quagmire.
The highest finisher aside from Australia and Japan qualify for Tokyo 2020.