Niall sets his sight on Gold

Young basketball player Niall Guite returns home from LA with gold medal
Young basketball player Niall Guite returns home from LA with gold medal
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A young basketball player from Sheffield has returned home from America to celebrate with the opticians who helped him win a Special Olympics gold medal.

Niall Guite, of Millhouses, joined more than 6500other athletes with learning disabilities from around the world, to compete in the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles.

The 21-year-old, who plays for Sheffield Lynx Basketball Club, was part of Great Britain’s Basketball squad who defeated teams from China, Italy and Latvia on their way to securing gold.

Gold medal winner Niall, who is affected by global development delay and communication difficulties, has been supported by Sheffield business Bird Opticians for a number of years.

Prior to the games, the family-run opticians arranged for the Norton College student to be provided with a new pair of spectacles with special shatterproof lenses which were suitable for Niall to wear while playing basketball. The spectacles were worn by Niall in every minute he competed on his way to a gold medal.

Staff at the opticians, on Surrey Street, also fundraised to help towards Niall’s travel costs to LA.

Niall said: “I’m delighted to return home from LA with a gold medal. The event was an amazing experience and something I will never forget.

“I’d like to say a big thank you to Bird Opticians for all the support they have given me, I wore the special glasses in every match so I couldn’t have done it without them!”

Niall’s mother, Michelle, said: “We’re extremely grateful for the support Bird Opticians have offered us throughout the years, since Niall was a young child.

“It was a wonderful gesture by them to provide Niall with special glasses for the Special Olympics, and the fundraising support they offered was very heart-warming.”