By Tom Degun

australian-steelersOctober 25 - Australia's phenomenal wheelchair rugby team have unsurprisingly taken the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) team of the month prize for August and September after they dominated the competition to secure gold at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

Spearheaded by the world's best player Ryley Batt, Australia crushed Canada 66-51 in the final at the Basketball Arena to finish as the only undefeated team in the London 2012 wheelchair rugby competition.

Batt scored 37 points in the final game to finish the tournament with a stunning 161 points in five matches.

"It's fantastic to score goals of course," said Batt after picking up his gold medal at London 2012.

"But the work of the boys out there who were screening for me, the low-pointers out there, the mid-pointers, high-pointers, they've all done a fantastic job.

"They allow me to look good on court when they probably do all the work for me."

More than half of Australia's players participated in their first Paralympics at London 2012, but the team included veterans such as three-time Paralympian Batt and four-time Paralympian Greg Smith, who had the honour of being the country's Opening Ceremony Flagbearer.

ryley-battRyley Batt steered Australia’s wheelchair rugby team to Paralympic gold with a stunning 161 points in five matches at London 2012

Australia claimed the award after taking 39 per cent of the public's vote on to take the prize ahead of Canada's men's wheelchair basketball team, who finished with 32 per cent of the vote after also taking gold at London 2012.

Other teams up for the honour included the Bosnian men's sitting volleyball team, Brazil's five-a-side football squad, China's women's sitting volleyball team, Finland's men's goalball side and Germany's women's basketball squad.

Unlike the usual system where there is an athlete of the month, the IPC awarded a winner for two months as the London 2012 Paralympics took place across both August and September.

There are separate awards for the best male athlete, best female athlete and the best team.

Alex Zanardi claimed the male prize after the Italian former Formula One driver claimed two Paralympic gold medals and a silver in handcycling, while Muffy Davis claimed the female prize after the American claimed three Paralympic gold medals, also in handcycling.

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