London calling for boccia queen Cecilia

120359-996_CECELIA_TURK_SR_31/1/12'Paralympic athlete Cecelia Turk during a boccia training session at the University of Portsmouth.''Picture:Steve Reid (120359-996)
120359-996_CECELIA_TURK_SR_31/1/12'Paralympic athlete Cecelia Turk during a boccia training session at the University of Portsmouth.''Picture:Steve Reid (120359-996)
Gosport Forton Bowling CLub team members, back row, left to right:  Eric Meighan, Byron Lewis, Mick Lush,
Graham Sampson and Rob Williams
. Front Row, left to right: Steve Anderson, Brian Croucher (team captain
holding cup) and Malcolm Stimpson.

Another one for the trophy cabinet

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Cecilia Turk is focused on fulfilling her lifetime dream with selection for the Paralympics looming.

And the Waterlooville boccia queen is now building up to the event which will decide if she makes it to the London Games this summer.

Turk has been selected to take part in the test event, which runs from May 5-7 and will govern whether she gains final selection for Team GB.

That follows the University of Portsmouth student’s call-up to the British squad, in readiness for the meet, last year.

Turk will get a taste for what she could be in for at the Paralympics, with the selection decider held at the Olympic Park in the capital.

The talent, who has cerebral palsy, has picked up a host of honours in her time in the sport and been honoured at The News Sports Awards.

Now she knows she stands on the brink of the Paralympics, after making it to the final stage.

And she has been training relentlessly to ensure she is in the best possible shape for competition.

Turk admitted there will be nerves ahead of the big day but she has been lifted by the number of people who will be willing her on.

She said: ‘I am worried about the selection but I do not want to think about it too much.

‘I am nervous about playing in front of the large crowd but I know I have been playing really well recently.

‘And I will have my friends from home and the university there to support me on the day.’

Around 40 athletes from 14 top international boccia countries will participate in the competition and Team GB will be represented in the three categories.

They are broken down into singles, pairs and team sections – with Turk going in the pairs event.

Aiming to make Team GB has taken a heavy toll on Turk’s free time.

She trains at University of Portsmouth, where she is currently studying for a masters degree, from Monday to Friday.

Turk insisted she can take the workload of studying and training for such a huge event, though.

Now it’s all about those efforts paying off and her making it to the pinnacle of her sport.

‘I can handle it well, the university have been really supportive,’ she said.

‘Now, I will just have to wait and see what happens.’