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Richmond, BC (ISN) 
– Canada’s top wheelchair basketball players will converge on the Richmond Oval for the 2012 National Championships May 18-20, 2012 in Richmond, BC. The best men’s provincial teams and the top women’s club teams from across the country will each compete to decide a National Champion.

Members of the Canadian Senior Men’s and Women’s National Teams will be among the elite talent on hand, as they prepare to don the maple leaf this summer at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

The 2012 National Championships will celebrate the theme of “Difference Makers” in honour of Rick Hansen and the 25th anniversary of the Man in Motion World Tour. Hansen, a former member of the Sr. Men’s National Team, will participate in the medal ceremonies following the championship games on Sunday, May 20, 2012, before the 25th Anniversary Relay makes its way to the Richmond Oval for a special public celebration.

Twenty-five games will be played over the course of three days and admission is free. The action gets underway Friday, May 18 at 10 a.m. (PDT). The championship games take place on Sunday, May 20 at 12:15 p.m. (women) and 2:15 p.m. (men). The medal games will also be webcast live at www.sportscanada.tv.

Team British Columbia is the five-time defending National Champions, and will look to match a team record of six consecutive championships, originally set between 1978 and 1983. With 21 victories, Team BC is the most successful squad in the tournament’s 45-year history.

On the women’s side, Team Quebec is the defending Champion after capturing its first-ever national title last year.

The fun-filled weekend will conclude Sunday evening with Wheelchair Basketball Canada’s annual awards banquet, where coaching legend Tim Frick will be inducted into the Hall of Fame and the organization will recognize the outstanding individuals whose commendable efforts have contributed to the enrichment of the entire wheelchair basketball community.

For more information visit: www.wheelchairbasketball.ca

About the National Championships

The National Championships is an annual tournament dating back to 1968 where male provincial teams compete for the Robert W. Jackson Trophy. The Canadian Wheelchair Basketball League (CWBL) was founded in 1986 and females in the CWBL Women’s division compete for the Donald Royer Trophy.

About British Columbia Wheelchair Basketball Society

BCWBS is a non-profit organization formed in 1983 and registered with Revenue Canada as a charity since 1985. The Society provides support to wheelchair basketball programs throughout British Columbia. For more information, please visit www.bcwbs.ca.

About Wheelchair Basketball Canada

Wheelchair Basketball Canada is the national sports governing body responsible for the organization of wheelchair basketball in Canada. It is a non-profit, charitable organization that is the Canadian member to the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF).

Wheelchair basketball is a fast paced, hard-hitting, competitive sport that has emerged as one of the most competitive and athletic sports played at the Paralympic Games. Our senior national teams are held in high esteem around the world for the elite skill and control that placed them on the podium with a combined five gold and one silver medal in the last five Paralympic Games.