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Team GB's Simon Brown 'raring to go' for European Championships

PUBLISHED: 16:30 13 August 2019

Team GB's Simon Brown. Picture: British Wheelchair Basketball

Team GB's Simon Brown. Picture: British Wheelchair Basketball

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Simon Brown says he is excited and ready as Team GB's wheelchair basketball squad prepare to get their European Championships underway later this month.

Brown, from Kingsbury, was named in the squad which won the World Championships last year by beating America in the final and will look to help his side regain their European title, which they lost in 2017 after winning it the previous three times.

Team GB will start the European Championships on August 31 when they take on Italy and Brown says confidence is high in the squad.

"We're feeling good and we're really confident of having a good time," he said.

"We've been together a while now and have been training five days a week. We have been training together since the end of May.

"We have also been out to play games against some of the best teams in Europe.

"We won the World Championships last year. This is our first chance to show that that wasn't a fluke and we are the best team in the world.

"We know that some teams will have a target on our backs. Everyone wants to test themselves when they play against us."

The European Championships are being held in Poland and will start on August 28.

After facing Italy, Head Coach Haj Bhania's side will then take on Switzerland, Austria, Poland and Germany before the knockout stages of the tournament begin.

Team GB lost out to Turkey in the final of the European Championships two years ago when they lost 76-69.

The competition also gives every team taking part the chance to qualify for the Paralympics in Tokyo, which take place next year.

Brown knows there is a lot of pressure on his team to succeed but is focused on achieving their targets.

He added: "There's a lot of pressure on us, we have to finish in the top four to qualify for the Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

"That will be our objective, we lost it two years ago. We're raring to go.

"I've been around a long time now. There is a lot of pride and responsibility. With family and friends, there is a lot of pride.

"We travel on the 28th. We're just fine tuning our plays and sets."

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