Dr Mitchell officiates in new world games

Fiji’s Dr Robin Mitchell on his way to delivering his speech at the inaugural World Beach Games in Doha, Qatar, last Friday. Picture: ONOC

FIJI’S Dr Robin Mitchell has praised the hard work placed by the organising committee of the inaugural World Beach Games in Doha, Qatar, last Friday.

Fiji stood tall at the ceremony as one of our own, who is also a high ranking officer of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), officiated in the world tournament.

Dr Mitchell, the chairman of the IOC Olympic Solidarity and president of the Oceania National Olympic Committee (ONOC) spoke at the opening.

“Together we are making history as this is the first and only truly global festival of beach, water and sports,” Dr Mitchell said.

“We believe that this innovative new multi-sport concept is helping national Olympics committees (NOCs) connect with new sports, new stars and a whole new generation of sports fans for the first time.”

He said in 2015 ANOC developed a vision of a global multi-sport event specifically for the benefit of the NOCs and their athletes.

“An event that combines elite youth focused, beach, water and action sports at captivating beach locations,” Dr Mitchell said.

“As the action unfolds in the coming days – I have every confidence that you will see that vision being realised.”

Dr Mitchell acknowledged Qatar’s support.

“I am sure everyone has seen the excellent world-standard facilities here in Doha. I acknowledge the ongoing support of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) through the many programs for their members.”

The preliminary action started last Friday in the beach handball and beach soccer competitions with fans sampling an early taste of the world-class thrills and spills that are expected in the coming days.

More than 1200 athletes from 97 countries from five continents are competing in 14 competitions in four locations.

Some Olympic medalists, world champions and other big names in sports are contesting in each of the 13 sports.

The six-day competition ends tomorrow and is the prelude to the 24th ANOC General Assembly which takes place on Thursday and Friday.

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