CAMPERDOWN Paralympian Josh Hose says he has been overwhelmed with the interest in his achievements at the London Games.
Hose has enjoyed a popular homecoming after he won gold with the Australian wheelchair rugby team.
He has taken up public speaking since returning and was in Warrnambool last night for the annual meeting of disability support organisation Southern Way.
The 25-year-old said he had been amazed to learn of the south-west Victorian interest in the Aussie Steelers while he competed.
“It was really great,” he said.
“Looking back now, you can appreciate things a bit more, having family and friends over there and rolling around the streets here.
“You have conversations with people and you hear they were as much on the ride of the Paralympic journey as I was.”
The Steelers defeated Canada 66-51 in the gold medal match in London to finish the tournament unbeaten.
Hose played four minutes and 35 seconds in the final, scoring one goal and executing a steal.
“From the start the coach said to us we have 20 quarters, we want to win every quarter of every game,” he said.
“At the end we won every quarter of every game. We beat every team.
“It was pretty good to come away with that.”
Hose said being back in Australia allowed him to reflect on one of the best fortnights of his life.
“I’m still absorbing everything,” he said.
“It was great to go over there and roll out in front of 80,000 people, a packed stadium, at the opening ceremony and to roll out the first time at the basketball stadium in front of 12,000 people and see such a big group of mates who came across. There were 20 mates and friends and family. To see them cheering, that’s one of the great moments.”
Hose will take a break from wheelchair rugby until the end of the year, but will have a review with Australian coaches next month. Representing Australia at the Rio Games in 2016 also remains on his radar.