Curler hopes to slide into medal contention

Bob McPherson (front) with (l-r) Aleen Neilson, Angie Malone and Tom Killin has sent out a warning to the other nations ahead of the Paralympic Winter Games.
Bob McPherson (front) with (l-r) Aleen Neilson, Angie Malone and Tom Killin has sent out a warning to the other nations ahead of the Paralympic Winter Games.
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Bellshill curler Bob McPherson believes Great Britain could be the side to beat at the Paralympic Winter Games in March.

He returns to Sochi in Russia a year after the Brits finished sixth in the World Championships in the same city.

However, McPherson believes the squad are now in such good form they can do much better and challenge the traditional might of the host nation and the Canadians.

He said: “Things are going great, the preparation has been really good and it’s hard to believe that the Paralympics are nearly on the doorstep.

“We have played in six competitions, both at home and abroad, and medalled in them all with three gold and three silver.

“I’ve been getting more consistent and it’s just about keeping that up. The team has been playing really well as a collective and we have developed a really close bond.

“I think we can medal, it’s just about seeing how we go in the nine-game round-robin, and getting to the business end of the week.

“We are officially sixth in the world after the World Championships in Sochi, but everyone is capable of beating anyone else on their day so it just depends how you get on out on the ice.

“You have teams like Russia and Canada who are really strong, but on current form I honestly think we are the danger team for the rest.”

McPherson, who has Spina Bifida, started the sport in 2007 and reached elite level two years ago.

He admits he never imagined he would become an Olympian so quickly, but is looking forward to the rewards of dedicating 35-40 hours a week to the sport.

McPherson said: “I’m really looking forward to competing, especially with it being my first Paralympics.

“The place was great last year but this time it is the Olympic Village which gives it something extra.

“I still wake up some mornings unable to believe I got that phone call from the selectors, it’s the best thing that has ever happened to me.

“Just two years ago my target was the 2018 Paralympics so to get called up this quick was a dream come true.

“I would definitely hope to do another one, as while it is a lot of work I am up for another four year cycle when the rewards speak for themselves.”

The British Paralympic team train at Hamilton Ice Rink which has signed up to the TryCurling initiative to encourage more people to get involved in the sport.

For more information visit Try Curling