A disabled sportsman from Velez-Malaga is to be the only representative from Malaga Province in the Paralympics this year. Jesus Romero, from Torre Del Mar, something of a local hero, will be participating in the wheelchair basketball. He will represent both Spain and his sports team, Clinicas Rincon Amivel BSR at Rio de Janeiro from September 8 to 18.
“Jesus Romero, our great local wheelchair basketball athlete will be an Olympian again, this time at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Paralympic Games. Congratulations champion. Proud of you,” the Velez-Malaga Sports Facebook page said, upon the news breaking.
This will be the second time the 31-year-old Axarquian forward has taken part in the Olympics. In 2012, he represented Spain in London, helping them finish 5th, beating Germany 67-48. He has also won two bronze medals in European competitions, in Germany and Israel.
Velez-Malaga takes wheelchair basketball very seriously, with Romero’s team proving themselves one of the best in Spain, winning the 2015 Andalucia Cup. Velez itself hosted the sport’s Copa del Rey in May this year, with Romero representing Malaga Province alongside his teammates from Clinicas Rincon Amivel.
“I’m very happy, it’s been quite difficult to be here, because there’s such a high standard. I have to keep working and give everything to pursue the best possible position,” he said. He appears optimistic about Spain’s chances, adding “we can do a good job.” Spain play Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, Japan and Turkey in their first round.
Romero is a key representation of sportsmanship and Spain’s commitment to the disabled. The nation is widely recognised worldwide as continuing to improve disability rights. It’s clear to see Romero has the backing of his club and his country, and nothing is going to keep him down.