The 2015 Parapan American Games in Toronto begin today (Aug. 07 to 15) with the opening ceremonies, and tomorrow will see the first sitting volleyball action of the Games for Team Canada.
Toronto 2015 is be an important tournament for Canada’s men’s and women’s national sitting volleyball teams as it is a direct qualifier for the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio. The Canadian men’s team took the bronze at the 2007 and 2011 Parapan Am Games, while this is a first major games appearance for the women.
In men’s sitting volleyball, Canada needs to finish first or second to Brazil to gain a berth for the Paralympic Games. The Brazilians already have a spot locked up as host country. The men’s first match is against Costa Rica at 5 pm Eastern on Aug. 08.
“We had a very positive staging camp in London (Ontario) and have had the opportunity to practice at the competition venue this week,” said men’s sitting volleyball coach, Ray Sewell. “The men’s team has adjusted to life in the athletes’ village, and the players are very excited for the competition to start tomorrow. It’s not very often that we get to compete on home soil, and we are looking forward to playing in front of our Canadian fans.”
On Sunday, Aug. 09, the women’s team plays the U.S. at 3 pm Eastern and the men play Brazil at 5 pm. Schedules and results at www.toronto2015.org.
On the women’s side, Canada needs to finish ahead of Cuba to qualify for Rio. Brazil has qualified as host and the U.S. automatically gained a berth after winning the gold medal at the world championships last year.