(Ottawa, Ont.) Wheelchair Basketball Canada proudly welcomes representatives from the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) to Ottawa as part of Canada’s bid to host the 2022 World Wheelchair Basketball Championships in the Nation’s Capital.
“Canada is beyond ready to host the greatest world wheelchair basketball championships of all-time,” said Steve Bach, President of Wheelchair Basketball Canada and the Bid Chair of the Ottawa 2022 bid committee. “Our vision is to host a transformational event that moves people to feel, think and act differently towards sport and people with disabilities.
“Backed by that vision, we will deliver an unparalleled and emotionally-charged experience for all, one that transcends sport by empowering positive social change as a champion of inclusion and drives the evolution of the game in Canada and around the world.”
Representatives from the IWBF are in Ottawa November 18 and 19 to conduct site visits of all competition, practice and hotel venues in order to assess Ottawa’s bid as the ideal host destination for the internationally-coveted event.
They were also guests of honour Monday at a reception hosted by Senator Chantal Petitclerc, the Ottawa 2022 Honorary Bid Chair, which was attended by prominent event partners and stakeholders.
“Canada is a leading sporting nation that is safe, welcoming and inclusive with an impressive record of sport hosting expertise and world-class volunteerism,” said Petitclerc. “As one of Canada’s most decorated Paralympians, I know Canada will deliver the very best athlete-centred event that contributes to the growth of the game and to a more inclusive world as part of the thriving Paralympic Movement.”
The IWBF World Wheelchair Basketball Championships would take place at TD Place Arena and Aberdeen Pavilion at Lansdowne Park in the late summer of 2022.
“We’re very excited about the possibility of hosting the World Championships in 2022,” said Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson. “It’s an incredible sport to watch and to participate in, and Ottawa is garnering a positive reputation for hosting more national and international events in the last few years.”
“We are fully committed to collaborating with the IWBF to increase the profile of the sport in Canada and around the world,” said Wendy Gittens, Executive Director of Wheelchair Basketball Canada. “Together with the support of our key partners at the Government of Canada, Government of Ontario, and City of Ottawa and other committed partners, including the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG), University of Ottawa, Carleton University, the Westin Ottawa, and Lord Elgin Hotel, we will raise the bar and host a world-class wheelchair basketball event that exceeds anything that has been held to date anywhere in the world.”
Ottawa 2022 will be a spectacle of eye-opening athleticism, tenacity and perseverance starring the top athletes in the world. Twenty-eight teams – 16 on the men’s side and 12 on the women’s side – representing roughly 20 nations will compete for the world championship crowns.
“As an athlete, there is no greater privilege than the opportunity to represent your country on home soil,” said three-time Paralympic gold medallist and Canadian wheelchair basketball icon Patrick Anderson. “Ottawa 2022 gives us a global platform to achieve greatness – to excel on the court and defy perceptions about ability, to share our stories and our passion for the game, and to captivate and inspire Canadians and audiences of all abilities around the world.”
The IWBF is expected to decide on a host city by 2020.