Rotarians fund new basketball wheelchair for Bungay teenager

Ryan Revell in his wheelchair provided by Bungay Rotary Club, with president Tony Sprake and rotaria

Ryan Revell in his wheelchair provided by Bungay Rotary Club, with president Tony Sprake and rotarian Chris Staines. - Credit: Archant

A Bungay boy has had his chances of appearing in a future Paralympics Games boosted as a result of support from Bungay Rotary Club.

Ryan Revell is a disabled 14-year-old who has shown great promise at wheelchair basketball.

Now, thanks to the club and the efforts of treasurer Chris Staines, over £2,000 has been raised towards the cost of a state-of-the-art wheelchair which will help him move considerably faster around the court.

Ryan’s mum Heather King and the rest of his family attended a recent club meeting to thank members for their generosity and explain what the new wheelchair means to him.

She said: “We want to say a massive thank you to Chris and everyone at the club – it is going to make a huge difference to Ryan.

“He is currently in the under 15s basketball team, but they want him in the under 19s. Basketball is his life.”

Ryan practices every week at the sports centre at Easton College, and plays in a tournament for his team, Norwich Lowriders, every month.

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He recently played with the under 19s team which competed in Nottingham, and won their match.

He plays point, but everyone in the squad attacks.

Ryan, who is a pupil at Hobart High School in Loddon, said: “I can go a lot faster now – it is a lot better, better in every way. I want to make it into the Great Britain squad for the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo if I can.”

A large amount of the money was raised by Mr Staines after completing a sponsored 5,000m swim at Bungay Pool. He did the swim - which worked out to be 200 lengths of the pool - using only his arms so he could appreciate what it is like for someone unable to use their legs.

Mr Staines said: “Action for Handicapped Children brought Ryan to our attention, asking if we could help him, and as it was for someone local we felt we would see what we could do.

“We knew a new wheelchair would be a boost for him. It is a really smart one, and by all accounts he is an ace wheelchair basketball player. I’m glad we were able to do something to bring this forward.”

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