A King’s Park lad is celebrating after being selected for the West of Scotland Boccia team for next year’s Special Olympics.
And Michael Gillooly (11) was so happy to find out he would be heading to York next September, he’s barely been able to sleep since. Michael is now the toast of Kirkriggs School, which he attends, and the Boccia club based there.
He found out during a recent trip to Glasgow City Chambers, but had to keep the news under wraps for two weeks.
Then, the school announced it to his friends and fellow pupils at an assembly last week.
Sally Russell runs the Boccia club at Kirkriggs, and says Michael has been on cloud nine since: “You have never seen a child so elected in all your life.
“I’m so proud of him and so are his parents, Stephen and Rosslyn. According to them he never went to bed until well after midnight the night he found out.
“His mum said he couldn’t get his head down at all until he had phoned his Gran to tell her.”
Boccia is a bowls-like sport that sees competitors throw red or blue coloured leather balls, with the aim being to land as close as possible to a white target ball.
The sport was designed to be played by athletes with cerebral palsy, before later expanding to be played by others who suffer from disabilities affecting motor skills.
It was featured in this year’s Paralympic Games in London.
Sally set up the club at Kirkriggs, an additional support for learning school, last year.
Michael took silver at the recent Scottish Championships, surprisingly finishing behind one of his clubmates, but Sally is sure he can bring home the gold when he heads down south next year.
She said: “He’s got the same chance as everyone else.
“If you don’t go in with that attitude, thinking you can win, then you won’t win.”