ASRAB is proud to announce the members who are about to compete in the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics! Starting tonight – Tuesday, August 24, 2021, the Canadian Goalball Team will be working to bring home the gold.
We would like to introduce our three ASRAB members who we are proud to be cheering on.
The team just completed a training camp in Sapporo, and are now ready to play in Tokyo!
Canada will compete in round-robin pool play alongside RPC (Russia), Israel, China and Australia. The second pool of women’s tournaments is made up of Turkey, Brazil, Egypt, USA, and Japan. To tune in and support the Canadian Goalball Team and our ASRAB members, find the dates and times below!
Match One: Canada vs RPC (Russia) on Tuesday, August 24, 7:30pm MDT
Match Two: Canada vs Israel on Thursday, August 26, 5:30 a.m. MDT
Match Three: Canada vs Australia on Friday, August 27, 6:00 p.m. MDT
Match Four: Canada vs China on Sunday, August 29, 11:45 p.m. MDT
The official goalball competition schedule can be found here: https://olympics.com/tokyo-2020/en/paralympics/schedule/para-goalball-schedule
To watch the games live please click the below link: https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1934065219853
Brieann Baldock of Edmonton will be making her Paralympic debut in Tokyo. The 26-year-old was introduced to the sport at an ASRAB event ten years ago and has been playing ever since. Baldock was born with oculocutaneous albinism which caused her to be legally blind. She has always loved to play sports and be active and credits her dedication to training during the pandemic with helping her win a spot on the Tokyo team.
“I am extremely excited and honoured to be named to the team to represent Canada at the Paralympics in Tokyo,” said Baldock. “It’s been my dream to make it to the Paralympics and I’m thankful to have gotten there with this amazing team, support staff, and coach behind me.”
Meghan Mahon is competing in her second Paralympics and has been a member of the Canadian team since 2016. Mahon is originally from Timmins, ON and was born with a genetic cone-rod retinal condition, giving her 10 per cent vision. She has always been involved in sports and was introduced to goalball in 2012 and started playing for Team Ontario in 2013. In 2017, she moved to Calgary to join the Alberta Goalball Program and train with Coach Trent Farebrother.
“My personal goals in goalball are to attend at least one more Paralympics and to be a contributing factor to the team standing on the podium,” said Mahon. “I strive to always better my performance and work on skills to help my team forward in our common goal.”
Trent Farebrother of Red Deer is the head coach of the Women’s National Goalball Team and will be coaching this year at his second Paralympics. During the pandemic, Farebrother had the team focus on fine tuning their individual and team skills. He is excited about the strong combination of veteran players, as well as new players, and has created a great team chemistry.
“The women’s goalball program has gone through considerable change on and off the court and I am very confident that this will translate into a successful Tokyo 2020 outcome,” said Farebrother. “Everyone has worked very hard during these difficult and challenging times and are excited to resume goalball competitions.”
Goalball was invented in 1946 to rehabilitate veterans with a visual impairment who returned from World War II. It is a team sport that has no able-bodied equivalent and is designed for athletes with vision impairments. Athletes compete in teams of three and try to throw a ball with bells in it into the opponents’ goal. Using ear-hand coordination, the ball is thrown by hand and never kicked.
The game is made up of twelve-minute halves and the teams alternate throwing or rolling the ball from one end of the playing area to the other. Players must use the sound of the ball and wear eye shades to ensure that all players are on equal footing.
(Above is Meghan Mahon (left), Trent Farebrother – Coach (Middle), and Brieann Baldock (right) standing in front of a goalball net in Tokyo!)