Luke’s a winner at Transplant Games

Luke Biggs with his medals

Buy this photo Luke Biggs with his medals

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Bicester and Banbury. Call me on (01865) 425426

A TEENAGER who had to endure two bowel transplants has brought home three medals from the Transplant Games.

Luke Biggs, of Abingdon, won bronze medals in table tennis, badminton and archery at the British Children’s Transplant Games in Bolton.

The 17-year-old was born with Hirschsprung Disease, which effects part of the large intestine. The disease means his bowel cannot work properly.

However in Luke’s case his whole large intestine is affected by the disease, which led to him having two transplants in 2005 and 2010.

Luke competed in the games for the third time this year, having previously won a gold medal for his archery skills.

Oxford Mail:

  • Luke competing in archery

He got involved after a friend competed in the 2011 games and suggested he signed up too.

Luke said: “I thought I’d go along the first year, but probably not every year.

“But now I have made loads of friends and they tell me I have to keep going.

“[This year] I just wanted to have a good time and to come away with three medals... I am just really pleased.”

The Abingdon and Witney College student takes up to 36 pills a day and regularly has to endure stints in hospital.

He said this can have quite an impact on his training.

Oxford Mail:

  • Luke competing in table tennis

Luke said: “I don’t properly train, but I would say it has an impact if I have to spend a week or two in hospital.

“If I’m away for a couple of weeks it takes a while to get back into the routine of playing again - it can be quite hard.”

His dad Ian said what Luke has achieved was “remarkable”.

The 47-year-old said:”It is brilliant, and it is really good for him to do. It is lovely for all of the children to take part, and it is quite remarkable when you see what some of them have been through or are going through.

“It is amazing.”

Luke, who also lives with his mum Karen, currently plays for the Birmingham Children’s Hospital team, as his condition means he splits his time between Birmingham and Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital.

His team came first in this year’s competition.

Oxford Mail:

  • Luke competing in badminton

This year was his last competing in the children’s games, but he has now been asked to become a team leader for his group at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

He said: “I would like to thank the donor family, this would not have been possible without them.”

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