Sitting Volleyball powerhouses Iran Men and China Women swept all before them as they took gold in Incheon at the Asian Para-Games in late 2014.
The Men’s draw featured 8 teams including Iran, China plus emerging nations such as Myanmar and Mongolia. Whilst China were pushed hard by both Iraq and Kazakhstan they ultimately proved to strong as they moved into the final against Iran who were yet to drop a set in the tournament. They kept record in tact as they dictated play with aplomb and controlled the game and recorded a 25-12, 25-20, 29-27 win. However both teams have now confirmed their spots for Rio 2016 where they are likely to lock horns once again.
In the Women’s competition – whilst China were strong favourites to take the title, all eyes were on which team would make it to the final and take that qualification spot for the Paralympics that was on offer as a result of China having qualified earlier in the year when they took at the World Championships. Surprisingly for some, Iran’s Women team came through to claim that prize, with a team spirit and togetherness which captivated the local crowds in Korea they were ably led by star player Maleki Zeinab Dizicheh on their way to defeating Sri Lanka and Japan. In the final, it looked at step to far against a China team who have won multiple titles at World and Paralympic Games losing 25-15, 25-12, 25-15.
It was overall a brilliant event and huge thanks must go to the wonderful organising committee, the officials, volunteers and athletes. Congratulations to those teams that qualified for Rio!