“From the battlefield of Afghanistan, laying in the dirt and potentially going to die, all the people from that moment all the way through my recovery and up to here, and my family and friends beyond that, all of the effort and the work they put in to support me … this is just a tribute to that,” McGrath said. “I’m just one piece of a puzzle that creates this moment and these Games.”
Australian sprinter James Turner took silver in his T36 100m final after admitting that he was distracted at the start of the race by a competitor.
Turner clocked 12 seconds flat, just behind China’s Deng Peicheng in 11.85, which was outside the Australian’s world record of 11.72 that he set in 2019.
Before the race, a Malaysian athlete moved slightly in the lane next to Turner, which he said put him off.
“I’m thinking how I’m going to do things better next time,” said a visibly disappointed Turner after the medal ceremony. “I absolutely let myself get distracted. I saw movement next to me. My body wanted to go with it and I let it.
“I’ve got to put the blinders on for next time.”
Australia claimed another two athletics medals in the evening, with Dion Kenzie winning bronze in the T38 1500m event, behind Canada’s Nate Riech in first.
Nicholas Hum picked up second place in the T20 category long jump with a best jump of 7.12m. Abdul Latif Romly won the gold with a distance of 7.45m.
Meanwhile, Paralympics Australia announced on Saturday that swimmer Tom Gallagher was admitted to hospital on Wednesday with acute pancreatitis after his bronze medal in the S10 400m freestyle event.
Gallagher is unlikely to return to Australia on a charter flight with his teammates but other arrangements are being organised.
“Tom is receiving excellent care from hospital staff, is resting comfortably and remains stable,” PA said in a statement.
Cyclist Carol Cooke also remains in hospital recovering from broken ribs and a punctured left lung that she sustained in a heavy crash during her road race on Thursday.
She will also return to Australia once she is cleared by medical officials.