David Smith

David Smith MBE

Athlete Information

  • Region

    Eastleigh, Hampshire

  • Date of Birth


  • Classification

    BC1 (competition partner Sarah Nolan)

Athlete main content


In 2003 he became the youngest ever British Boccia Champion, beating the-then GB captain in competition.

Having established himself as the top BC1 player in the UK, David immediately joined the national team, making his major international debut in 2005 when he represented England at the European Championships. Having medalled consistently within the team throughout that time, in 2007 David had his first major international individual medal by winning gold in the World Cup. The team also achieved its first gold, meaning David scooped the first major double gold by any British BC1 player.

At Beijing 2008, David entered as world number 2 but had his first negative result finishing 13th in individual competition. However, he recovered to help the BC1/BC2 team string some impressive performances together against China and Portugal to get the gold medal.

In 2012, David secured an individual ranking of 2 as he approached the London 2012 Paralympics. David got into the final in the individual event, losing an emotional match to Thailand’s Pattaya Tadtong – a long-time rival. The team secured a gutsy bronze against Portugal having been heavily beaten in semi-final by Thailand

In March 2016, David went to Beijing to defend his individual world title. He battled hard to knock Daniel Perez out in the last 16, then went on a great run to the semi-final before losing to Pattaya in a very uneven game. David recovered to win the bronze medal match and secure his 3rd seed status for Rio. David also won gold at world open beating Daniel again in the final and showed much improved form. The team also gained silver, narrowly losing to rivals Japan in a tie-break.

At the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games David sported a memorable blue mohawk hairstyle as he improved on his individual performance at London 2012 and secured the gold medal with an emphatic 5-0 victory over Netherland’s Daniel Perez. Victory meant he became the joint most successful British Boccia player in history.

His major tournament success continueed with wins at the 2018 World Championships in Liverpool and at the European Championships in 2019.

David successfully retained his Paralympic title at Tokyo 2020 winning gold in the BC1 event - this time sporting a red and blue mohawk - coming back from 2-0 down to take the win 4-2 against Malaysia’s Chew Wei Lun. He had the honour of carrying the British flag at the Closing Ceremony of the 2020 Games.

Major Results

Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games

  • Individual BC1: Gold

Rio 2016 Paralympic Games

  • Individual BC1: Gold

London 2012 Paralympic Games

  • Individual BC1: Silver
  • BC1/BC2 Team: Bronze

Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games

  • BC1/BC2 Team: Gold

2019 BISFed European Championships, Portugal

  • Individual BC1: Gold
  • BC1/BC2 Team: Bronze

2018 BISFed World Championships, Liverpool, UK

Individual BC1: Gold

2017 BISFed European Championships, Portugal

  • Individual BC1: Gold

2016 BISFed Boccia Individual World Championships, Beijing, China

  • Individual BC1: Bronze

2015 BISFed Boccia European Championships Team and Pairs, Surrey, UK

  • BC1/BC2 Team: Gold

2014 BESFed Boccia World Championships, Beijing, China

  • Individual BC1: Gold

2013 BISFed European Championships Guimaraes, Portugal

  • Individual BC1: Gold
  • BC1/BC2 Team: Bronze

Share this page

Related Articles