The Beijing Paralympic Games have provided opportunities for the promotion of human values and social inclusion of people with disabilities, said European Union (EU) Education Commissioner Jan Figel on Friday. "The Being Paralympic Games as well as the Beijing Olympic Games put the level of preparations to very high standards," he said.
The Beijing Paralympics opens up an important path for the disabled to enter into society, said former president of World Blind Union (WBU) and vice-chairman of Swedish Blind Association (SRF) Kicki Nordstrom recently. Nordstrom admired China Disabled Person's Federation. She said the disabled need an organization to federate and coordinate for expressing voices and vindicate rights. She believed China will develop better in the areas of public service, creating employment and education for the disabled after the Beijing Paralympics.
The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) was forced to redistribute medals at the men's swimming competition in its second wrongly held victory ceremony during the Beijing Paralympics. In the men's 100m breaststroke SB5 final on Friday, Mexican swimmer Pedro Rangel had been disqualified after the final and Thomas Grimm of Germany collected the gold in the medal ceremony. But an appeal by the Mexicans was accepted. Rangle was reinstated his first place and received his gold medal in the second victory ceremony for the event late on. On Monday, the crash of athletes' wheelchairs in women's 5,000m T-54 race led to six out of 11 runners unable to finish the race and three athletes injured.
The Iranian wheelchair basketball team did, in fact, remove itself from the competition and did not play the USA team in the quarterfinal round. The International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF) and the International Paralympic Committee announced that the Iranian team has pulled out of the Paralympics tournament "due to their dissatisfaction with the... schedule," the Australian Broadcasting Company reported Saturday. No team was used as a replacement for Iran, so the USA received a win in the quarterfinals by default; the game goes in the books as USA 20, Iran 0. The USA advances to the semifinals, and is assured of playing for a medal.
"Blade Runner" Oscar Pistorius won his second gold of the Paralympics Saturday to keep his triple sprint dream alive, winning the 200 meters in front of a huge crowd at the "Bird's Nest" National Stadium. Nicknamed after the carbon fiber blades he wears, Pistorius won a court battle to take part in the Olympics after proving himself a strong competitor against able-bodied athletes.
Matthew Cowdrey of Australia, the reigning Swimming World Disabled Male Swimmer of the Year, surfaced triumphant from one of the most competitive races of the meet. Cowdrey registered a world record 1:03.34 in the men's 100 back - S9, lowering the standard of 1:03.47 set by Jarrett Perry of the U.S. during prelims. The win gave Cowdrey his third individual gold and fifth overall. Guo Zhi of China (1:03.59) and Perry (1:03.66) gave Cowdrey a serious run for his money.
Justin Zook of the U.S. wiped out the world record in the men's 100 back - S10 with a time of 1:01.15. At night, he had nearly more than he could handle as he touched out Michael Anderson of Australia, 1:01.29 to 1:01.47, for gold. Estonia's Kardo Ploomipuu placed third in 1:03.37.
Britain's cyclists have contributed a remarkable 17 golds after David Stone and Darren Kenny won their respective road races, while archers Danielle Brown and John Stubbs began another glorious day for the team with victories.
Double amputee sprinter Oscar Pistorius of South Africa won his second gold medal at the Paralympic Games on Saturday, while top American swimmer Erin Popovich missed a chance to finish with six golds.
Yang Bozun of China opened the day with a pair of world-record swims. First, he clocked a time of 1:08.40 during prelims of the men's 100 back - S11, before capturing his first gold of the meet with a time of 1:07.74 to lower his standard. It was the first gold for Yang after earned three other individual silver medals. Damian Pietrasik of Poland took silver in 1:08.81, while Viktor Smyrnov of Ukraine placed third in 1:09.41.
Stephanie Dixon of Canada lowered her world record in the women's 100 back - S9 with a time of 1:09.30.
Mexico's Patricia Valle concluded the day with a winning effort of 57.05 in the women's 50 free - S3. Singapore's Pin Xiu Yip finished second in 57.43, while Fran Williamson of Great Britain touched third in 1:04.22.
Power-lifter Bian Jianxin's dream come true at the Beijing Paralympics as the Chinese lifted 135kg to claim the gold medal of the women's 60kg category and broke the world record here on Saturday.
Natalie Du Toit of South Africa won her fourth gold medal in swimming at the Beijing Paralympics, taking the 400-meter freestyle on Friday in a world-record time for her disability group.
In other quarterfinal action, Canada defeated Israel by a score of 55-47. Canada advances to the semifinals to play the USA on Sunday, September 14 at 7:00pm Beijing Time (Sunday, September 14 at 6:00am, Central Time / 4:00am, Pacific Time).
Britain dominated cycling with four gold medals and six overall. The United States won seven medals in cycling, including three gold. Spain also managed three gold medals in cycling and six overall.
In track, sprinter Oscar Pistorius is expected to win the 200 on Saturday, adding to the gold he won earlier in the week in the 100.
In swimming, a new Israeli record was set by Inbal Schwartz, who swam the women's 50m butterfly in 40.79 seconds. Schwartz, who suffers from cerebral palsy, is a protege of Noah Ram, an IDF disabled veteran who has won six medals in international swimming competitions.
Sophie Pascoe (NZ) looks likely to add to her medal haul after a world record-breaking swim in her S10 backstroke heat on Saturday afternoon. Shireen Saphiro of South Africa qualified in the second fastest time but was nearly two seconds behind the Kiwi.
In cycling, Annemarie Donaldson has finished in 11th position in the grueling 36.3km road race, won by Germany's Andrea Eskau.
There was success on the roads, courtesy of Wales' cyclists. Milford Haven's Rachel Morris stormed home to gold in the time trial.
THERE were extraordinary successes yesterday from the Welsh Paralympians in the pool as swimmers Liz Johnson and Gareth Duke took gold and silver respectively in the 100m breaststroke.