Nicola Sturgeon Praises Scottish Paralympians

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has praised the "heroic efforts'' of Scottish Paralympians at the Rio Games.

Scots athletes on the ParalympicsGB team won 17 medals - five gold, eight silver and four bronze - exceeding their tally from London 2012, where they won 11.

The success follows the Rio 2016 Olympics, which was the most successful overseas Games for Scottish athletes with 13 medals - four gold, seven silver and two bronze.

Ms Sturgeon said: "The dedication of our Paralympic athletes is truly inspiring and I am delighted that they have been so well rewarded for their efforts.

"There is no higher honour than competing on a global stage and all of our sportsmen and women have done Scotland proud as part of ParalympicsGB, who've been fantastic from start to finish.

"There have been heroic efforts throughout the team and I hope they'll motivate others to take up sport and enjoy all the benefits it can bring.

"Our athletes have done themselves and their country proud and I'm sure they'll receive a rapturous welcome when they get home to Scotland.

"I hope they take time to enjoy the celebrations with their friends, family and the public in the days ahead.''

Libby Clegg won two golds in athletics while Jo Butterfield took gold in the club throw, Karen Darke won cycling gold and Gordon Reid won gold and silver in wheelchair tennis.

Stef Reid, Neil Fachie, Scott Quin, Alison Patrick and guide Hazel Smith, and Abby Kane, the youngest athlete on the ParalympicsGB team, all won silver medals.

Libby Clegg and Jo Butterfield set world records during the Games while Libby, Jo and Scott Quin all set Paralympic records with a number of the Scots on the ParalympicsGB team also setting personal best times during the competition.

Sportscotland chairman Mel Young said: "This has been a fantastic Games for ParalympicsGB and we are delighted at the significant contribution that the Scots on the team have made to the success of the team.

"While we celebrate the achievements of established names in Para-sport like Neil Fachie and Libby Clegg, it is so exciting to see the number of new athletes who have risen to the occasion and made their mark on Scotland's sporting history, with the promise of more to come.

"We now look forward to sharing in the success of the Scots on ParalympicsGB and Team GB on a day of celebration in Edinburgh on September 28.''

The XV Paralympic Games closed in Rio on Sunday night with Great Britain finishing second in the medal table behind China.

The next Olympic and Paralympic Games will be held in Tokyo in 2020.

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