Croatia currently has two confirmed athletes for the Beijing 2022 Winter Paralympic Games ©Getty Images

Croatian Paralympic Committee (HPO) President Ratko Kovačić has praised the county's Paralympians for their performances in 2021 as the body looks ahead to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games.

Croatia recorded its largest Paralympic medal haul at Tokyo 2020 with three silver and four bronze medals.

The previous best was set at Rio 2016 when it won two golds, two silvers and one bronze.

"I am delighted and satisfied with the results achieved in the past year," said Kovačić, as reported by T.portal.

"We reached a high level of results last year in various international competitions.

"According to the number of medals won at the Paralympics in Tokyo, we are number 46 in the world.

"According to the criteria of medals won according to the number of inhabitants, we are among the top eight in the world, so we have knowledge and quality.

"The public increasingly recognises us and appreciates the success of our athletes."

Croatia recorded its best Winter Paralympics performance at Pyeongchang 2018 with two medals ©Getty Images
Croatia recorded its best Winter Paralympics performance at Pyeongchang 2018 with two medals ©Getty Images

The HPO is now gearing up to send a delegation to Beijing 2022, which is set to run from March 4 to 13.

"The places of two athletes in alpine skiing have been confirmed, namely Lucija Smetiško and Damir Mizdrak, then Bruno Bošnjak will compete in snowboarding, and we expect another invitation for one athlete in Nordic skiing," said Kovačić.

The President is looking to build on the success of Pyeongchang 2018, which saw Croatia win one gold and one bronze medal, its first-ever medals at the Winter Paralympics.

He emphasised that in order for performances to improve more funding needs to be injected into grassroots sport.

"We have good support from the state budget through the Ministry of Tourism and Sports and our sponsors," said Kovačić.

"But that does not cover all our program needs and plans.

"We see the biggest problems in the weak support for sports at the local level, as well as inadequacy and insufficient availability of sports facilities.

"We strive to enable sports for all young people with disabilities throughout the Republic of Croatia, and so far, we have a coverage of 40 per cent.

"However, we need additional financial incentives to properly develop the program of involving young people in sports throughout the country."