Played by two teams of five, the rules of the game are broadly similar to those of Olympic Basketball, with the same size court and basket height.
A team has 24 seconds from taking possession of the ball to complete its attempt on the basket. One point is scored for a successful free-throw, two for a normal field basket and three for a shot made from behind the arc of the three-point line.
Players move the ball around the court by passing or dribbling. A dribble is when a player bounces the ball and pushes the chair simultaneously or, places the ball on their lap and takes up to two pushes of the chair, bounces the ball, and then places the ball back on their lap.
Players are required to throw or bounce the ball after every two pushes of the wheels on their chairs to avoid being penalised for ‘travelling’.
Twelve teams compete in group stages in the men’s competition and 10 teams in the women’s, with the top teams qualifying for the knock-out rounds.
Matches consist of four quarters of 10 minutes each.
A player who commits five personal fouls must be replaced in the game by another player.
The Wheelchair Basketball competition at the Paralympic Games is played in wheelchairs and is open to athletes with a permanent physical impairment in the lower limb(s) which can be objectively verified. Impairments may include paraplegia, lower limb amputations, cerebral palsy, and polio. Not all players are daily wheelchair users, so athletes can be ambulant.
Wheelchair Basketball classification is based on the players’ functional capacity to complete the skills necessary to play - pushing, pivoting, shooting, rebounding, dribbling, passing and catching.
Players are classified by a points system from 1 to 4.5 – with higher classification numbers representing those with the least physical impairment such as a lower limb permanent injury.
Each squad can consist of up to 12 players, with only five players on the court at any one time. During a match a team must field five players whose cumulative classification does not exceed 14.0 points.
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