Maurice van Rijn, Kees van de Pont and Alfred van Loo.
Photo: private photo archive
Part 2 of Episode 152 of “Sports Equipment in the Old Box” on Thursday 9-16 November 2000 about performances of the wheelchair basketball team, which won the silver medal at the Paralympic Games in Sydney. As a player on this team, Kees van de Bunte received Zilveren Pauw from the municipality of Ermelo and had a party at the Sportcafé Triade. Click here for part 1.
Written by Bram Burgrave.
During the evening of the informal party, Kis van de Bont received a bouquet of flowers and a can of beer, which were presented by Alfred van Loo and Maurice van Rijn. The silver medal winner in turn donated the competition jersey number 14 to the Triade Sports Café. This allowed to expand the impressive range of shirts of famous Dutch athletes.
Kees van de Ponte was very satisfied with the performance of his team, but he was not much happy with the media, especially Dutch television. “Twelve teams took part in the tournament, and the power difference between Canada, the United States, England, Germany and the Netherlands was very small. In particular, the horrific match against our country Australia, which we won 48-47, was an unforgettable match. It is a pity that we lost the final against Canada. , despite a quick 6-0 lead, but we are also very satisfied with the silver medal.
The media and public interest in Australia has been overwhelming. More than 100,000 spectators attended the opening and closing ceremonies and we played in the halls, all tickets sold out. Paralympic sport is recognized as a true sport. There was a lot of talk about it in the Netherlands, for example, a number of medal winners spoke on talk shows. But rarely were any pictures of the sports matches themselves broadcast, unlike England and Germany. Apparently, Studio Sport does not consider it a top-class sport. Why not let the audience decide that?
Broadcasting match footage can be a good test case. Now, when we came back to Holland, we were often asked why there was so little broadcast. It is clear that disabled sport needs to become better known in our country,” said Kees van de Bont. During the gala evening, Devedo’s wheelchair basketball team manager Marco Simon stated that he is very proud of Kees.
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