Special Olympians shine at Abu Dhabi Games

| 18/03/2019
CNS Local Life
The Cayman swim team at the Special Olympics opening ceremony 14 March (CLICK TO ENLARGE)

(CNS Local Life): After three days of competition, the Special Olympics Cayman Islands (SOCI) team has won one gold, four silver and four bronze individual medals in athletics and swimming, as well as qualified for the medal round in basketball in the World Games, which are being hosted by Abu Dhabi. All together, 18 athletes and seven unified partners are competing, with track athlete Tessa Terry earning the first gold for Cayman in the 200m.

The Special Olympics Unified Sports initiative brings together athletes with and without intellectual disabilities to train and compete as unified partners. According to the Special Olympics, the idea was “inspired by a simple principle: training together and playing together is a quick path to friendship and understanding”.

Other medallists were Chelsea Frederick, earning silver in the mini-javelin, and Beaver “Julius” Smith, who took third in the 1500m, clocking 5:08.55. Jordan McLean finished his 200m in 27.60, for seventh place.

The swimming team also performed well, with open-water entrants Kanza Bodden and unified partner Jennifer Powell earning silver in the 1500m and Rasheed Lawrence and unified partner Lee Hart taking bronze in their 1500m event.

In the pool, Dayana Powery earned two medals, finishing second in the 100m individual medley and third in the 200m freestyle. Keanu McKenzie took silver in the 100m IM and bronze in the 200m IM. Matthew Javier finished just out of the medals with fourth place in the 200m freestyle.

While not winning a medal, Anachell Newman recorded a new personal best in the 50m freestyle, cutting 10 seconds off her previous fastest effort.

The basketball team, with a record of three wins and one loss, has qualified for the medal round.

Cayman is also competing in bocce ball. Khalid Arana placed fourth in the singles competition and will next be taking part in the unified doubles.

The Games continue though 21 March.

Check back for more coverage on Cayman’s Special Olympics team.

See more photos of the Cayman team at the Special Olympics below, supplied by SOCI (click to enlarge)

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Category: Sports

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