June 26 - Britain and home nation Portugal led the medal count with three golds apiece as Greece, Hungary, the Netherlands and Slovakia also took home prizes at the 2013 European Boccia Championships in Guimarães.
Paralympic champion David Smith (pictured top, centre) got the British gold rush underway with a 6-1 victory in the BC1 final against Panagiotis Soulanis (pictured top, left) of Greece, leaving the Netherland's Daniel Perez (pictured top, right) to take the bronze in 6-0 win over Kateřina Cuřínová of Czech Republic.
Smith triumphed again in the BC1 and BC2 final match, which finished at a close 5-4, as he helped his nation scupper Portugal's hopes of a victory on home turf, while Slovakia edged out Spain to take bronze in the medal playoff match of the same category.
London 2012 competitor and home favourite Abílio Valente received a 8-0 thrashing from compatriot Fernando Ferreira, a Paralympic medallist, in the BC2 final, with Martín Manuel securing Spain's only medal of the tournament as he beat British two-time Paralympic gold medallist Nigel Murray 8-3 for the bronze.
Portuguese London 2012 bronze medallist José Macedo narrowly defeated Greek Paralympic champion Greg Polychronidis in the BC3 gold-medal match, which had to be decided by a golden point, and Belgium's London 2012 bronze medallist Kirsten De Laender defeated Briton Jess Hunter 3-1 to secure the same colour again in Portugal.
Macedo and Polychronidis met again in the BC3 pairs final, where Macedo's team secured a convincing 7-2 win, but the roles were reversed for Hunter and De Laender as Britain added a bronze to their medal haul after a tight game against the Belgians.
Slovakian newcomer Samuel Andrejcik created one of the shocks of the tournament when he defeated Greece's Christos Kavanas in the BC4 final, 4-3, however, fellow Slovakian Roberto Durkovic was unable to pull off the same feat as Hungary's Paralympic medallist Dezso Beres won their bronze medal match 3-1.
Beres' squad had to settle for the silver medal in the BC4 pairs final, as Hungary fell 6-1 to a dominant British side, as Greece outscored the Czech Republic 4-3 to win bronze.
Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]
May 2012: Triple gold haul puts Britain's boccia crew in fine fettle for London 2012
April 2012: Greece's Polychronidis beats British boccia champion Thomas in friendly
October 2011: Superb Smith leads Britain to four medals at Boccia Europa Cup in Norway