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Win Well Podcast: Danni Di Toro and Melissa Tapper

Melissa Tapper has a busy few months ahead of her, with the table tennis player to once again represent Australia in both the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Tapper made history as becoming the first Australian to qualify for both Games, with Paris 2024 to be her third Olympics and fourth Paralympics overall.

She recently chatted about what her historic journey has been like with fellow table tennis legend and soon-to-be eight-time Paralympian Danni Di Toro during an episode of the AIS Win Well Podcast.

“Coming up through the sporting ranks, I was always in bodied sport before I realised Paralympics even existed,” Tapper said.

“So I was 19 when I had my first real experience of a Paralympic kind of event and I then began to see how things might differ. And to be honest, probably the biggest changes was actually realising the amount of accessibility needs that need to go into something. And that can be just from transport to being at the venue, even hotels is a huge one. It’s a big factor that plays into a para athlete's day-to-day.

“But in terms of on the table, I know I’ve always had the approach that, regardless of who I'm playing, I want to win. So, whether it's able bodied or para, the goal is to win.”

For Di Toro, a member of the AIS Athlete Advisory Committee and the Paralympic Australia Athlete Commission, one of the positives with sport’s united commitment to win well has been the focus on capturing and appreciating the athlete experience.

“I think there's always room for the athlete voice,” Di Toro said.

“When we bring people to the table, when we're asking people those questions about how the environment can be better suited to make sure that everyone can thrive in that environment, I think that benefits everyone.”

Hosted by two-time Olympian Melissa Breen, the AIS Win Well Podcast is produced by the AIS, one of the 51 organisations who has made the Win Well Pledge through Australia’s High Performance 2032+ Sport Strategy.

Win Well Podcast Danni Di Toro and Melissa Tapper