The finishing touches have been made to the venues, and many of the 1,300 athletes have arrived for the inaugural ANOC World Beach Games Qatar 2019, which gets underway today and will run until October 16.
Almost 100 countries will be competing across four specially created venues that will host Olympic medallists, world champions and many of the leading names in each of the 13 contested sports.
The action begins today with the first matches in beach handball and beach soccer taking place at Al Gharafa Beach from 9am.
At the official pre-event press conference held at the Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) Headquarters yesterday, Local Organising Committee Director-General and Secretary-General of QOC, Jassim Rashid Al Buenain, said: “Qatar, as you know, has an impressive track record for hosting world-class sporting events, because of the vision and support of the Emir His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.
“The 1st ANOC World Beach Games represents another landmark occasion for Qatar. The nature of this event provides us with an opportunity to show the world what Qatar has to offer as a leading leisure destination,” Al Buenain said.
“Our venues have been carefully selected with this in mind, ranging from the stunning beach front location of Katara Beach, where most of the action will be centred, to the clear waters of Legtaifiya Lagoon,” the QOC Secretary-General said.
“While I am looking forward to watching some of the world’s best athletes in their sports competing for 350 medals, what particularly excites me is the prospect of seeing so many cultures and nationalities coming together for a celebration of fair play,” he said.
ANOC Secretary-General, Gunilla Lindberg, said: “We would like to express our thanks to His Highness the Emir, the state of Qatar and everyone at the Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) for their warm hospitality. In just three months they have achieved a huge amount and we have no doubt this will be a fantastic event,” Lindberg said.
“We have athletes from nearly 100 countries in Qatar guaranteeing that this will be a truly global celebration of beach, water and action sports. We cannot wait for the Games to begin and watch some of the world’s best compete on this global stage for the first time.”
The competition programme includes a mix of beach, water and action sports with 3×3 Basketball, Kitefoil Racing, Open Water Swimming (5Km), Aquathlon, Karate Individual Kata, Beach Wrestling, Beach Tennis, Beach Soccer, Beach Handball, Beach Volleyball, Bouldering, Skateboarding, Waterski Jump and Wakeboard all expecting world-class fields.
QOC has been named the official partner of the Games while Katara Cultural Village and Aspire Zone Foundation are the Official Venue Partners.
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