Smith shines brightly at Seville Boccia World Open
Paralympic champion David Smith showed he means business when it comes to individual success at this week’s Seville Boccia World Open in Spain after two impressive performances on Friday.
Smith, winner of four Paralympic medals including two individual podium finishes, won both of his encounters as the individual competitions got underway.
The five-time European Champion opened his account with a 10-3 win over Russia’s Mikhail Gutnik, recovering from conceding three in the first end to restrict his opponent to no further scores.
He returned later in the day for his second Pool A match, taking on Amagoia Arrieta of Spain and it proved to be another high-scoring affair.
That was helped by a strong finish to the encounter, where he scored five in the penultimate two ends to add gloss to the 13-0 win and put him in a strong position for later in the competition.
Another to enjoy two wins from two on Friday was Smith’s Rio 2016 teammate Patrick Wilson in the individual BC3 class.
He required calm nerves in his opening encounter, taking two in the final end to beat Hong Kong’s Wing Tung Liu 5-4 before his second Pool D clash was a much more straight forward 7-0 victory over Spain’s Wafid Bendahame.
Scott McCowan bounced back from losing his opening Pool A clash with Adam Peska on a tie-break to beat Greece’s Anna Ntenta 8-4.
Brother and fellow Boccia athlete Jamie McCowan also suffered a defeat in his first match, losing 4-2 to Samir Van Der Beken but after being tied at 5-5 with Thomas Knoth of Germany after four ends in his second match, scored a vital two in the tie-break to take the win.
There was one match apiece for Claire Taggart and Will Hipwell in the BC2 pools with the former losing 6-1 to Hong Kong’s John Loung in Pool C.
Hipwell meanwhile lost 7-2 to Bernd Ments, failing to build on a strong opening end where he scored his only two points.
Meanwhile in the BC4 competition, Evie Edwards suffered an opening 5-3 loss to Michaela Balcova but Stephen McGuire was in impressive form, beating Gergo Berkes 6-0.