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Tokyo 2020: GB finish second at Tokyo Paralympics

Krysten Combs
Krysten Combs Image credit:

Great Britain has finished second in the Tokyo Paralympic Games after winning two more bronze medals on the final day.

Krysten Combs (pictured above) came third in the men’s SH6 badminton singles whilst the men’s wheelchair basketball team beat Spain 68-58 to claim bronze.

Their victories bring GB medal total to 124 with 41 golds, 38 silvers and 45 bronzes.

On Friday Great Britain lost to Japan in the wheelchair basketball semi-final, redeeming their past performance they finished 50-40 to finish third over Spain on Saturday.

Their coach Gaz Choudhry said the defeat over Spain was because the team were "being resilient and being courageous".

Wheelchair basketball player Terry Bywater paid tribute to the coach during an interview with the BBC.

"We can't say enough about Gaz, the way he's led this team and brought us together - the bond we have in this group is something really special," said Bywater.

"I've got five Paralympic bronze medals but it's fair to say this one means just a bit more because of all the sacrifices we've made and tough times we've had."

A humble Choudhry said: "We've had so many knock-backs all summer. This game just came down to heart.

"This bronze medal is for everyone else. We know where we were, but now we've won it, it definitely feels more than a bronze. But this team deserves a gold."

Australia’s Krysten Coombs won silver in the SL3 event behind Brazil’s Vitor Tavares.

"Being here has been amazing but to come away with a medal is brilliant," Combs told Channel 4.

"I'm shocked and overwhelmed. I can't believe it but I've been working so hard.

"Having the sport at the Paralympics will do so much for it all over the world."

The games did not end well for Britain’s Matt Skelhon and Lorraine Lambert when they missed qualifying for the final event of the shooting programme, the R6 mixed 50m rifle prone SH1.

"Today, I think I couldn't handle the pressure. I really lost it," said Skelhon.

"It has been a really tough week. I am well out of competition practice, and it showed out there.

"My confidence is low and I went out and tried as hard as I could but I think that just put even more pressure on myself. I gave it everything and it wasn't enough.

"I think 90% of it is mental - if the equipment is on point then the rest is mental - knowing you're at a level to compete with others but we really haven't had that with no exposure to competition for two years."

ParalympicsGB chef de mission Penny Briscoe told BBC Radio 5 Live the team had “rewritten the history books” with their standout achievements.