Special Olympian James Murphy from Corbally is living his Olympic dream.
James, who attends the Daughters of Charity Service in Lisnagry, set off from Dublin Airport earlier in the week to take his place at the 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games, which run in Pyeongchang in South Korea until next Monday.
In the opening day of the floorball competition on Wednesday, Murphy sparkled for the Ireland team, scoring six goals in their 11-1 win over host nation, South Korea.Team Ireland comprises of 14 athletes. Six of the athletes will compete in the Alpine skiing Slalom, Giant Slalom and Super G competitions while a team of eight, including James, takes part in the floorball event.
Team Ireland is accompanied at the Games by a management team of volunteer coaches and medical personnel who have been working closely with the athletes over the past number of months to ensure they are fit and ready to take on the world in South Korea.
The 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games is one of the biggest winter sports events to take place in the world this year.
The games feature more than 3,000 Special Olympics athletes and coaches from more than 100 countries who will compete in seven Olympic-type sports: alpine skiing, cross country skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, short track speed skating, figure skating, floor hockey and floorball.
Matt English, CEO Special Olympics Ireland, said the Irish team has already achieved so much by getting to compete at world games level.
“I know they will be fantastic ambassadors for Ireland in South Korea. Every member of the team has shown great dedication to their training and sport over the past number of months and I am sure these preparations will pay off at the games.
“I would like to wish the athletes and their coaches all the very best and let them know that we, their biggest fans, will be keeping a very close eye on their progress in South Korea.”