Wheelchair athlete Jamieson Leeson eyes off 2024

Five years ago Jamieson Leeson had never even heard of the wheelchair sport of boccia, but now she’s a world champion and top contender for the 2024 Paralympics. 

When the 20-year-old left her tiny country town of Dunedoo to compete in the Montreal 2023 World Cup, she returned with a gold medal in the pairs event and an overall global rank of number two.

The central western town is home to just over 1,000 people, now including an international gold medallist.

“It’s really been a whirlwind, going from the world number 20-something to the world number two in the past 12 months,” Ms Leeson said.

“I’m really happy with my results and I can’t wait to see what happens next year.”

Ms Leeson said her competitive ambitions were thwarted when COVID forced the cancellation of several tournaments, but she is now eagerly eyeing off the 2024 Paralympics.

Boccia is a game of accuracy similar to lawn balls, involving athletes throwing, kicking, or rolling a ball depending on their disability.

Jamieson has spinal muscular atrophy, which prevents her from throwing a ball or lifting her arms.

That’s where her mum Amanda Leeson comes in.

Mother-daughter team

Without ever looking at the ball, Amanda must angle a ramp for Jamieson to use based purely on verbal instructions.

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