SPORTS

Canadian wheelchair basketball star up for prestigious award

12/14/2012 10:00 EST | Updated 02/13/2013 05:12 EST
Canada's Patrick Anderson has been shortlisted for the prestigious Laureus Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability Award.

A native of Fergus, Ont., Anderson has starred for the Canadian wheelchair basketball team since 1997.

"It's an honour to be shortlisted," Anderson said in a statement from Wheelchair Basketball Canada. "That's going to be a tough group to stand out in though. Win or no, the acknowledgment is a team accomplishment and another feather in the cap of our program and the wheelchair basketball community in Canada."

The 33-year-old led Team Canada with 34 points in a 64-58 win over Australia in the gold medal match at the London Paralympics in September. Anderson was also first in tournament scoring, first in total rebounds and had the first two triple-doubles in Canadian history.

Anderson now has three gold medals and one silver medal in Canadian Paralympic competitions.

"Pat Anderson's importance to our team rested not only on the individual performances he was able to achieve at the 2012 London Paralympics, but the positive impact he had on the team as a whole," Team Canada head coach Jerry Tonello said in the statement.

"Individually, Pat came back from a two-year hiatus stronger, faster and a better scorer," Tonello added. "As a team player, he led by example and enabled many of his teammates to have some of their best games in a Canadian uniform."

Other nominees for the award include former F1 driver Alex Zanardi of Italy (road cycling), Brazil's Daniel Dias (swimming) and Alan Fonteles Cardoso Oliveira (athletics), David Weir of Great Britain (athletics) and Namibia's Johanna Benson (athletics).

The goal of the Laureus World Sports Awards is to recognize the year's best sporting achievements with the winners voted on by the Laureus World Sports Academy.

The winners will be announced at a ceremony in Rio de Janeiro on February 6, 2013.

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