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  1. ITV Report

Focus on our Paralympic hopefuls

Andrew Lapthorne in action during a training session at the National Tennis Centre, Roehampton. Photo: PA wire.

The Paralympics are upon us and we're looking back at some of the athletes we've met in the run-up to the Games.

One of our strongest medal contenders is the horse-rider Sophie Christiansen from Maidenhead.

She's hoping to add to the two golds she won in China.

Liz Wickham went to meet her in training, in Buckinghamshire:

Private Derek Derenalagi from Bushey once fought for his country, but he lost both his legs in Afghanistan five years ago and is now preparing to fight for a gold medal. He spoke to our Sports Reporter Sally Williams last month.

The inspirational Martine Wiltshire will be representing Paralympics GB in sitting volleyball.

Her story is one of survival from the depths of despair, having lost both her legs in the July 7th bombings.

In Andy Lapthorne, from Pinner, we have a real medal hope in wheelchair tennis. He's played in plenty of tounaments, but Andy says the 2012 Games are "the big one" especially as they're on "home ground".

The years of training, dedication and sacrifice have also paid off for Ali Jawad, from Tottenham, and two sets of brothers who have now made London their home.

Wheelchair rugby is expected to be one of the most popular sports at the Paralympics.

Sally Williams checked out a test event in April to find out why it's also known as "murder ball".

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