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Paralympian Sagar back in Barnsley ahead of World Championships

By Doug O'Kane, Sports Editor Friday 13th June 2014
Ian Sagar with the European Championship trophy.

Paralympian Ian Sagar has just completed another trophy-laden season in his adopted home of Italy and will soon fly off to the World Championships in South Korea.

 

In between those two events, he is planning to spend some rare time off with friends and family in Hoyland Common. The 32-year-old – who has been in a wheelchair since a motorbike crash in 1999 – is one of best players for the Great Britain wheelchair basketball team and also has a professional career in Italy with a club in Cantu, near Milan, where he just won the league title.

 

He has been back in the UK since last week, when he played in a friendly tournament at Worcester University against Japan and the Netherlands. He has now returned to Barnsley and plans to relax with friends and family before jetting off to Japan on June 24 for a pre-World Championship warm-up tournament.

 

"I am looking forward to going back to Barnsley to see my mum and friends," said Sagar.

 

"I will go out with my mates and watch the World Cup at one of the pubs in Hoyland Common.  I fall back into life very easily. I might have left Barnsley but Barnsley has never left me."

 

Although proud to be from the town, Sagar is considering staying in Italy permanently. He lives there with his Ukranian partner and her two children. He said: "I'm loving it over there and there's a possibility that I'll stay. Things are going well for me personally and professionally. "I'm getting pretty good at Italian but I've been told that my accent has a Barnsley slant to it."

 

Sagar is looking forward to the World Championships in Incheon, South Korea. He has been part of the 'Bulldogs' squad that won the last two European Championships but has never won a medal at a global tournament.