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In the summer of 2016, British Paralympian Will Bayley won GOLD at the Rio Paralympics in Brazil in the Class 7 singles Table Tennis final, beating local hero Israel Pereira Stroh in 4 sets. Will famously climbed on the table immediately after winning his match and received a yellow card from one of the umpires for his antics. The first thing Will did when he climbed off the table was to hug the umpire who had given him a yellow card!
Will's celebrations are more understandable when you remember that this was his third Paralympic games. Will competed at both Beijing 2008 and London 2012, where like Israel he lost in the final of his home games. But it has taken Will much longer than 12 years to climb to the heights of Paralympic Champion, perhaps Will's rash celebration on the table was a subconscious, emotionally charged tribute to the many other hurdles he has had to overcome to be Paralympic Champion. Consequently, this Lego set captures Will's moment of triumph in the table tennis court (and on the table!) in Rio 2016.
Will was born with arthrogryposis a rare condition which affects all four of his limbs and can have a significant impact on mobility. In addition, at the age of seven he was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and began a six-month course of chemotherapy at Great Ormond Street Hospital. As part of his recovery from cancer he began playing table tennis and at the age of 12 he started playing at Byng Hall Table Tennis Club in Tunbridge Wells where, within 4 years he was beating most of the able bodied players!
This model features 4 Minifigures, including Will Bayley and Israel Pereira Stroh as well as the two umpires. The court is also recreated with the final scores from the match included. All the Minifigures are wearing the outfits and uniforms from the event. The set also includes an alternative Will in medal ceremony attire with his gold medal.
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Technically, this Lego set is all about Minifigures, their decals and how to create and render them. Having started to use POV as a renderer on LEGO Hastings Pier (https://ideas.lego.com/projects/158371), I wanted to understand how Minifigures and Minifigure decals worked. The application of custom decals in LDD is not that easy to set up, but with a fair degree of trial and error I eventually figured out how to do this (mostly - good short sleeves shirts still elude me!). It was then a process of creating the custom decals for each Minifigure using photos of the event for reference for clothing and uniforms etc. The subsequent translation of the LDD model into POV also proved challenging (and my thanks to all the online resources that pointed the way). Eventually I used "LLD to POV Ray Converter" on a PC to convert the files and render out the final images in POV.