There are just three days to go until 12 teams from around the globe descend on Dubai for the inaugural World School Games.
The global sports event – which will see some of the world’s best young athletes come together in the United Arab Emirates between 8th – 11th February – comprises of football, athletics and swimming competitions, with the overall winner to be crowned World Champions.
Schools from as far afield as Spain, Nigeria and Greece have been hard at work over the past weeks to prepare themselves for the showcase event – all in hope of securing the World Primary School Games trophy.
As well as the athletes and coaches, there is a large travelling support expected in Dubai, with some teams bringing over 40 supporters to cheer, clap and scream their team’s on throughout the three days of action.
James Hair, of the World School Games Organising Committee, is thrilled to be welcoming so many teams to the UAE for the primary schools event. He is hopeful that in addition to the sport, the athletes, coaches and supporters will leave Dubai with new friends and memories to last a lifetime.
Hair reiterated the importance of the host city to the success of an event of this nature, citing Dubai as one of the best places in the world to carry-out competitive elite sport.
“We are so pleased to be hosting the first ever World School Games in the wonderful city of Dubai. As a hub of international travel and sporting excellence there is no better place to be holding the inaugural competition.
“We are hopeful that everyone in attendance will make the most of the fantastic opportunities on offer in the city; from shopping to skydiving – there is a multitude of wonderful things to see and do in Dubai.”
He also said that despite the competitive nature of the event, there are important lessons to be learned when bringing together schools spanning three continents.
“It is absolutely key to what we are doing at the World School Games that the athletes and coaches get the chance to spend time with their counterparts from other schools. The students will have the chance to get to know each other across three days of sporting action as well as during downtime at the team hotel.
“So much can come from conversations with people from different cultural, educational and sporting backgrounds and we are hopeful that the teams will embrace this opportunity through the Games. It is a chance to share stories, training methods and best practice for athletes and coaches alike.”
The World School Games starts with the athletics event at Dubai Sports Park on Thursday 8th February. Stay tuned to Gulf Youth Sport throughout the event for news and photos from the Games!