A CHESTER sports coach is a finalist in the 2017 UK Coaching Awards.

Former GB wheelchair basketball star Anna Jackson, of Upton, has been nominated in the Disability Coach of the Year category.

Anna holds multiple coaching roles including head coach and founder of Cheshire Phoenix Wheelchair Basketball Club, head coach of Wales U19 wheelchair basketball team and head coach of Angels of the North 1st Division wheelchair basketball team.

Jackson won more than 70 caps playing for the Great Britain team, and played at the year 2000 Paralympic Games in Sydney.

After retirement, Anna came across the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust working with young people and helping them fulfil their potential.

This inspired her to give back, helping to inspire people with disabilities, through her own story.

She works hard to promote all three teams and supports the recruitment of players, coaches and volunteers as well as applying for funding and looking for sponsors.

She is also a tutor and runs wheelchair basketball coaching courses to inspire the next generation of coaches.

Anna said: “It’s amazing, I’m really honoured. You do all the work for coaching for the love of it, but to be recognised is incredible.

“Seeing people develop, no matter how small the development is or gaining more confidence, that’s what gives me a real buzz.”

The showpiece annual event – now in its 20th year – is seen as one of the most prestigious within the coaching community and will be held in London on Thursday, November 30.

The awards recognise the contribution coaches make in transforming lives across the UK.

Mark Gannon, chief executive officer of UK Coaching, said: “It’s a real pleasure to announce the names of the finalists for the 20th anniversary of the UK Coaching Awards.

“In this special year for the awards, we had an unprecedented number of nominations across a multitude of sports and from every corner of the country.

“This diverse group of people put coaching at the heart of physical activity and sport, and make a difference in many walks of life. I look forward to celebrating their achievements.”