264 athletes compete for just 2 gold medals
In a similar way to many of the other Paralympic sports, wheelchair basketball was first introduced as a way of rehabilitating servicemen who had received spinal injuries during World War Two. It was initially developed in 1946; since then it has become popular with a wide variety of wheelchair users.
In each competition there are two teams of five players, all of the players are in wheelchairs. Interestingly, despite the different heights of players in wheelchairs, basket height remains the same as that for the able-bodied players. The court is also the same size.
It is thought that more than 25,000 people regularly take part in wheelchair basketball, representing more than 90 countries. It is possible for players to move the ball by passing or dribbling it. However, in order to ensure that they are not travelling forward, the wheelchair players must pass or bounce the ball every two pushes of the wheelchair.
Every time a successful free throw occurs, the team scores one point. Two points are scored for every field basket that occurs and the throws from behind are worth three points. Wheelchair basketball became part of the Paralympic games in 1960 and has since then become one of the most popular sports in the Paralympic programme. The most dominant countries are Canada, USA, Australia and Britain. There are both male and female competitions.
Official Link: http://www.london2012.com/games/paralympic/wheelchair-basketball.php