England fullback Mike Brown has vowed to help Wheelchair Rugby stay alive
‘Murderball’ had their funding by UK Sport slashed from £2.9m to zero
Great Britain Wheelchair Rugby are set to appeal the decision
England fullback Mike Brown has vowed to fight for wheelchair rugby by helping raise the money needed to keep the sport alive.
This, according to The Guardian, is not because wheelchair rugby has no potential to medal in Tokyo, but because there is just not enough resource to go round.
“Wheelchair rugby is an action packed sport which at the Paralympics is one everyone wants to watch.” said Brown to The Rugby Paper.
“Great Britain are European champions and came close to a medal in Rio, so why UK Sport cut their funding is beyond me.
“I’d like to meet the people who made that ridiculous decision because for a lot of these high-impairment wheelchair rugby players it’s the only chance they’ll get to represent Team GB and there are some amazing stories of people who have beaten the odds.”
In 2012 wheelchair rugby had seven teams in the country and no real performance system in place. Since then the sport has grown to 22 teams and it continues to grow with new clubs in Norwich and Brighton about to come on line.
“I’m sure GBWR will appeal but in the meantime I’ll be arranging some dinners and helping to set up a crowd-funding page, while over recent years I’ve been selling my old kit on inmylocker.com with all the proceeds going to GBWR.
“There’s been a lot of interest already which is always much appreciated, and I’m not going to take a backwards step on this.
“That’s the way I play and it’s the same with GBWR; they’ve let me be a part of their team and now it’s time for me to step up as much as I can.”