DISABILITY SPORT: Hinchingbrooke School pupil Jabe Peake celebrates a first national crown
Hinchingbrooke School pupil Jabe Peake has become a national champion in the little known sport of boccia.
The 17 year-old won the Boccia England (BE) Cup with a fine performance at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield recently.
Boccia is a bowls-type game played at Paralympic level by people with physical disabilities. A-level student Peake suffers from cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair at all times.
Peake came through regional competitions and north play-offs to reach the final stages of the Boccia England Cup, which fell while he was sitting exams – something that was not an issue for many of his opponents in this all-age sport.
Peake won two of his group games to advance to a semi-final clash against former Great Britain player Andrew Morgan, which he won 4-3.
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That set-up a final clash against ex-England international Caroline Robinson, who beat Peake on a tie-break in the group stage.
But Peake was able to claim revenge with a 5-3 triumph to earn his first national crown.
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He was first introduced to boccia as part of the London 2012 Paralympics legacy programme and the Hinchingbrooke School Springboard group.
Peake then became part of the Boccia England Talent Squad and in 2014 met locally-based coach Sandra King, a former England head coach and organiser of the boccia competition at London 2012.
Peake earned international section for the first time in 2015 and has since represented England in a number of events, scooping a host of medals in the process.
Peake also attended his first UK Boccia Transition Camp recently, having been identified as having the potential to compete in major international events, including the Paralympics.
His ultimate goal is to become world number one – a position currently held by his sporting idol, David Smith, who won the BE Cup for 14 consecutive years, but didn’t enter in 2017.
Peake will get an opportunity to face Smith in the UK Championships, which are being staged in Liverpool in August. The same city will host the World Championships next year when Peake is hopeful of competing.
He is part of the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) which is delivered locally by the University of Cambridge Sport Service. It provides valuable support in key areas such as psychology, physiotherapy and strength and conditioning.
Peake also receives free court-time at One Leisure St Neots, while Hinchingbrooke School permit him follow a reduced timetable which allows for plenty of training.
Anyone interested in sponsoring Peake should contact Sandra King through website www.sandraking.org.uk