Just over five years ago, Kris Aves was paralysed in the Westminster Bridge attack after being hit by the van driven in a shocking terrorist attack. Doctors told him he’d never move his legs again.
So, you could be forgiven for thinking – the off-duty police officer on the day of the attack – his time on the golf course was over.
However, fast-forward to 2022 and Kris has been named the European Vice-Captain in the Cairns Cup. Golf’s premier disability Ryder Cup Style event taking place at The Shire – London in May.
Following the atrocity, Kris went through some pretty intense rehabilitation both physically and mentally but thanks to the amazing technology and following support from The Golf Trust, Kris has returned to golf using a Paragolfer.
And with his dedication and determination to recover and play a full 18 holes again, in wasn’t long before his progress was noticed by European captain Kevin Booth, who asked Kris if he would like to join the 16 strong male and female European Team.
The event, presented as THE ‘Disability Golf’s Premier Match Play Event in the World’ will be played out by two teams from the USA and Europe.
Originally planned for 2020 at Celtic Manor, the ‘festival of golf’ was moved to its new venue following the COVID pandemic.
It was during this interim period, the European team changed a number of times due to illness, availability, and work commitments but when the opportunity to select a new Vice- Captain emerged, Kevin had no hesitation in asking Kris.
“It was the obvious choice, his enthusiasm for the game is infectious and playing the Cairns Cup at The Shire (where Kris is a member) will give us valuable course knowledge. In addition, Kris has already brought much to the team and the event as a whole, and his background story alone has helped us to attract more sponsorship. He has personally been involved in raising the profile of the event in Parliament with local MP, Theresa Villers due to attend the opening ceremony due to Kris”.
Following his appointment, Kris commented: “Thinking back to when I was in hospital, and I never thought I would be able to swing a golf club again to now representing Europe in a major disability golf competition is just a dream. Not only is it a great honour but an amazing opportunity to show people with different disabilities and different golf abilities, what can be achieved. It really is unbelievable to be involved!”
Kris went on to say “Hopefully people will come and watch the event it will be a spectacle seeing all the players who have overcome personal
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