Fergus native Patrick Anderson lived up to his reputation as one of the world’s best wheelchair basketball players this week during the Paralympics.
In Canada’s first three round robin games he averaged 20 points, 13 rebounds, and five assists per game.
Anderson’s most dominant performance came in the team’s opening game on Sept. 7 – a 62-59 victory over Germany. He registered game highs in points (29), rebounds (12), and assists (five) in 30 minutes of playing time.
The next day Anderson led the team in points with 15, and rebounds with eight, and also added five assists – all in just 14 minutes on the court. The Canadians handily defeated their South African opponents 80-55.
On Sept. 9, Anderson again led the Canadians with 15 points and also registered game-highs in rebounds (19) and assists (6), as Canada defeated Sweden 62-52.
“Yes, we did expect to win, but personally I didn’t feel I got into my comfort zone out there,” Anderson was quoted as saying after the Sweden game (on the official Paralympics website).
“These European teams have good days and bad days. They had some dangerous players playing at their best.”
The Canadian team finished its round robin action against Japan on Wednesday and Iran on Thursday, the results of which were not known by press time.
The men’s team is trying to win its third consecutive Paralympic gold medal – something that has never before been done. Quarterfinal matches begin on Saturday and the men’s gold medal final is scheduled for Sept. 16.
For more details visit http://en.paralympic.beijing2008.cn. For information on television broadcasts visit www.cbc.ca. Those wanting to catch Anderson in action may want to take advantage of this opportunity, as it may be his last major international competition.
The 29-year-old again hinted at retirement in his blog on Sept. 4, saying while in China he hopes to take in the entire experience and “enjoy what’s feeling more and more like my last go around.”