With the 2015 Parapan Am Games taking place in Canada this year – August 7-15 in Toronto – the tournament has become even more important to Canadian wheelchair athletes. And as Canada’s wheelchair tennis stars aim to earn spots in the Games, the next few months will be full of exciting competition and preparation.
Canada will be sending two male and two female players to the Parapan Am Games, set to take place at the brand-new University of Toronto Scarborough Tennis Centre. The qualification scenario is fierce with a handful of athletes in each category among the contenders. Canada’s top male players currently are Joel Dembe, Philippe Bedard, and Eric Gilbert, with Sarah Hunter, Mika Ishikawa, and Kirsten Sharp a few of the female competitors.
Each athlete has a full schedule over the coming months as they look to round into form and gain valuable ranking points. Bedard and Dembe will be heading to South America later this month to compete at events in Chile, Brazil, and Ecuador while Gilbert will start his push in Italy, before all three players join up in tournaments in Dallas and New York City.
On the women’s circuit, Hunter and Ishikawa are travelling to Italy for two events in May, with Sharp joining her countrymen at the American events in May and June.
Be sure to follow along the Road to Parapan Am with us – in the weeks ahead, we’ll offer updates on Canadian results and qualification scenarios, plus provide features on all of the players and more fun content to get everyone ready to cheer on Team Canada at the Games.