Appeal to help Leah make it to Paralympics

Picture by Allan McKenzie/ - Leah Evans, Castleford, England - 010414 - Leah Evans.
Picture by Allan McKenzie/ - Leah Evans, Castleford, England - 010414 - Leah Evans.

An appeal has been launched to help Castleford wheelchair basketball player Leah Evans achieve her sporting dream of taking part in the Paralympics.

Leah, 17, was a born with a rare hip condition that restricted her growth and movement.

Despite this, the talented teenager has excelled at wheelchair basketball, earning a call up to Team GB.

She teamed up with national children’s charity, The Caudwell Children’s Trust, to raise the £3,750 needed for a specialst wheelchair that will enable her to compete internationally.

But further cash is needed to buy specialist wheels, which can cost up to £600.

Leah, of Gypsy Lane, Townville, began playing basketball for the Wakefield Whirlwinds after having surgery to restructure her hip.

She said her call up to GB was a dream come true, adding: “When I got the call, it was a huge shock really. I’ve never been the sporty type until I began playing basketball after my surgery.

“I’ve been along to train with the team and they’re all very friendly. I’m really excited to get involved with Team GB and continue to play basketball.”

Before the surgery last year, Leah, who defied the odds and learned to walk after being told, aged four, she never would, was a passionate dancer who danced six times a week.

But doctors told her she would never dance again after she spent over a year off her feet and in a cast.

She said: “Dancing was my whole life, and to have it taken away was awful, I felt crushed when I was told I had to stop. Basketball is to me now what dancing was, I train six times a week and love to play.”

Leah juggles her basketball training around her A-level studies, and is set to start university.

To donate visit or text LEAE88(£2) to 70070