Tige Simmons has had a sports career to be proud of. With a Paralympic gold and silver under his belt, he is one of the most respected members of the Australian men’s wheelchair basketball team, but what most people don’t know is that Tige is also a national sit-down water skiing champion.
Making his debut for the Rollers more than a decade ago, Tige started off his career on top, having been a part of the gold medal winning team at the 2002 FESPIC Games in Korea. Continuing his streak, he subsequently won gold at the Kitakyushu Cup in Japan in both 2003 and 2004.
At his first Paralympic Games in Beijing, Tige was part of the team that won gold. Defeating Canada 72-60 in the final game, Tige describes Beijing 2008 as his best Paralympic Games to date, as he not only experienced the atmosphere of the Games for the first time, but he achieved his ultimate goal in sport – something he thought he wouldn’t achieve for years to come.
On a high from the success of Beijing 2008, Tige and the Rollers went on to win gold medals at the 2009 World Cup, the 2010 World Championships and 2011 Asia Oceania Regional Championships.
On top of their game going into London 2012, the Rollers made it through to the gold medal match, but ultimately lost to the Beijing 2008 silver medallists in a close 58-64 defeat.
Nicknamed ‘Tiger’ for his boisterous style of play, he also plays guard domestically for the Brisbane Spinning Bullets and was named in the NWBL All-Star Five in 2005 and 2008.
Tige’s personal goal is to be successful and respected at sport, work and in his personal life. He hopes to become a starting player for a victorious Australian basketball team at Rio 2016 and is setting his sights on one day becoming Australian captain.
He looks forward to every game he plays at an international level and in ten years time, hopes to still be playing in the NWBL, and helping the next generation of talent make it to international level.
In training for Rio, Tige turns to retired Rollers player Adrian King for inspiration. Having played on the same team for many years, Tige respects Adrian for his dedication to the sport, his constant motivation and also for being the solo Queensland representative on the team for many years.
Describing himself as determined, approachable and cheeky, Tige Simmons believes in living in life to the full. When not working as a marketing coordinator for Tourism Queensland, Tige enjoys the outdoors, doing up old cards, playing tennis and listening to music.