Town’s Paralympian heroes return home
BRAY’S Paralympian heroes Padraic Moran and Gary Messet may be returning home from China on Friday without medals after the games in Beijing, but they made a valiant effort nonetheless and have both excelled in their respective fields.
Boccia player Padraic Moran came within millimetres of progressing to the semi-finals last week, while the 7-a-side soccer team on which Gary Messet was a member took sixth place after losing 4-2 to the Dutch yesterday.
The Boccia team hopes were further dashed last Thursday when they were beaten early in the competition. Moran, however, is now the fifth best player in the world.
‘It hasn’t really sunk in yet,’ said Padraic. ‘It has been great but I’m very tired now and we’re all dying to get home - it’s getting a bit like Big Brother here!’ He added that overall, the Irish team had done very well, with a total of 23 athletes getting in to the quarter finals, semi finals and finals.
‘Sixth place is great for the soccer team,’ said Padraic, ‘It’s an improvement for them on Athens where they came in eighth.’
He added that it was disap- pointing, however, for them not to have beaten the Dutch, in what was being billed as a ‘grudge match’ after Holland beat Ireland in the European Championships.
‘The atmosphere is fantastic over here though,’ added Padraic. ‘And the coverage of the games back home has been phenomenal. But we are looking forward to flying in to Dublin on Friday evening.’