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Tristan Knowles says the Aussie Rollers go into this week’s World Championships as ready as they can be having endured one of the most rigorous preparations for a major tournament in his long national career.


Knowles at AOZ 2022 2

“Our preparation has been near perfect. Over the last eight months we’ve been really fortunate to get away to the Netherlands, Belgium, Thailand so we’ve picked up 12 or 13 really quality games against quality opponents.”


It continued with a series of games in Turkey over the weekend against Turkey, Japan and the USA before landing in Dubai for their opening game against Italy.


The World Championships were supposed to be held last November but were postponed due to a scheduling conflict with the FIFA World Cup happening at the same time in neighbouring Qatar.


The delay has given the Rollers extra time to find cohesion with a very different side that finished 6th at the Tokyo Paralympics.


“We look at our preparation this time compared to Tokyo, which was in the midst of COVID, where it was actually harder for the Australian team to travel within Australia than it was for a lot of those European teams to travel in Europe so we didn’t get the benefit of those 15 to 20 


games in the lead up where we’ve had this time so we’ve uncovered a few of things we’ve needed to iron out in the lead up and fix which we’ve done.”


Seven players from the Tokyo Paralympic side will feature for the Rollers with Knowles, Jannik Blair, Bill Latham, Shaun Norris, Tom O’Neill-Thorne, Kim Robins and Sam White all inclusions, while Andrew Dewberry, Frank Pinder, Eithen Leard, CJ McCarthy-Grogan and Shawn Russell made the final cut this time round.


 “Huss and I have been training incredibly hard, this will be number five for me which is probably a different way of saying I’m pretty old.” 


“I love getting up and training, I love all the hard grind and looking forward to competing against 15 other teams in the world all looking to do the same thing which is to come out as champions of the world.”


“We’ve obviously identified some of our real strong points, so we feel like we’ve addressed everything we’ve needed to. We’ve done a lot of homework, watched a lot of video, done all the physical work and are ready to go now.”


There are 16 teams, divided among 4 pools, competing in the mens’ draw with Australia in Group A with Italy, Brazil, and the United Arab Emirates


“Competition is absolutely red hot and of the sixteen teams there’s probably eight or nine that are a legitimate chance of going all the way so we’ve got a number of teams going to Dubai that are trying to achieve the same thing so it’s going to be a really really tough challenge but in saying that we’re pretty confident that we’ve got all the tools in the toolbox to get the job done.”


Group B are Egypt, Germany, Canada, and Thailand; Group C are Netherlands, Argentina, South Korea, and France while Group D consists of USA, Great Britain, Iran, and Iraq. 


In the women’s competition, the Roller Hawks’ Hannah Dodd will add to her growing list of international tournaments as Australia battles in Group B with Brazil, Canada, China, Spain, and Great Britain while over in Group A are Algeria, USA, Thailand, Japan, Germany, and the Netherlands.



Rollers Schedule (All times AEST)

Sunday June 11 @ 20:15 AUSTRALIA vs ITALY

Wednesday June 14 @ 01:00 AUSTRALIA vs UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

Wednesday June 14 @ 18:15 AUSTRALIA vs BRAZIL


Gliders Schedule (All times AEST)

Saturday June 10 @ 16:00 AUSTRALIA vs CHINA

Tuesday June 13 @ 00:45 AUSTRALIA vs BRAZIL

Tuesday June 13 @ 22:45 AUSTRALIA vs SPAIN

Wednesday June 14 @ 22:30 AUSTRALIA vs CANADA

Friday June 16 @ 20:15 AUSTRALIA vs GREAT BRITAIN



Friday June 16 Final Pool Game / Quarter Finals

Saturday June 17 Quarter Finals

Sunday June 18 Semi Finals

Monday June 19 Placing Games

Tuesday June 20 Medal Games


All games will be available to watch via IWBF YouTube Channel.