Paralympics a showcase 'for what can be done'
Claims of doping, touting, dubious judging decisions and general cynicism have stolen much of the lustre from the world of international sport. But today, a new page will be turned in Rio as a 48-strong team representing Ireland in 10 out of 23 sports will participate in the 2016 Paralympics. In total, 4,400 athletes from 170 countries will compete for 528 medals.
Olympians are expected to excel, and Paralympians take it to another level. Their courage and commitment brings a special light to the Olympic flame, no matter what winds of controversy blow.
Achievement can not really be reflected in the hue of base metals but, competing in London in 2012, Ireland won eight gold medals, three silver and five bronze - 16 in total.