POSTED: April 5th 2014

Visually-impaired judo added to Baku 2015 Sports Programme

The organizing committee of the Baku 2015 European Games is determined to think outside the box / Baku 2015
The organizing committee of the Baku 2015 European Games is determined to think outside the box / Baku 2015

CHAD WISE / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) European Olympic Committees President Patrick Hickey paid tribute to the Baku 2015 hosting concept following the third EOC Coordination Commission for the inaugural European Games.

The 16-member Commission met for two days, during which it was announced visually-impaired judo would be added to the Baku 2015 event programme. Baku 2015 will be the first continental Games to include a para-sport discipline.

Eight International Blind Sports Federation-approved athletes will compete in the men’s +100 kilogramme and women’s -48 kilogramme categories.

“We don’t want the European Games to be a carbon copy of other multi-sport events, we want them to be innovative,” Hickey said. “Baku 2015 has shown its hand in this regard and I am delighted with the proposal to include visually-impaired judo on the Sports Programme. It is a welcome addition and absolutely in line with the EOC’s vision for the European Games to act as a catalyst for innovation in European sport.”

Azerbaijan First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva chairs the Baku 2015 European Games Operation Committee and described the forward-thinking aspects of Baku 2015’s Sports Programme. The street athletics event will be competed for in the city centre, showcasing the Games’ focus on exciting and engaging events. Other innovative events include 3x3 basketball, beach soccer, acrobatic and aerobic gymnastics and karate.

As part of the International Olympic Committee’s Olympic Agenda 2020 proposal, eight sports will have events as direct qualifiers for the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games.

“As chairman of the EOC Coordination Commission I can confirm that we have been impressed with the state of BEGOC’s preparations on our third visit to Baku,” Hellenic Olympic Committee President and EOC Coordination Commission Chairman Spyros Capralos said. “We have had a busy schedule with back-to-back meetings as well as site visits. It has been a very productive two days.

“There is just over a year to go before the Opening Ceremony of Baku 2015 so every day is important. But after this inspection, even though there is still a large amount of work to be done, I have complete confidence that BEGOC will continue to be innovative and make good progress and will deliver the perfect stage for the inaugural European Games.”

BEGOC focused on sport, medical and anti-doping, venues, readiness, communications and commercial, broadcast, technology, NOC services, villages, accommodation, arrivals and departures, accreditation, ceremonies, transport, security, press operations, HR and workforce aspects during the Commission’s visit, which also included site visits to the National Gymnastics Arena and the Central Traffic Control Centre.

“Every day of preparation is hugely important as we move towards the delivery of the first European Games,” Azerbaijan Minister for Youth and Sports and Baku 2015 European Games Organising Committee Chief Executive Officer Azad Rahimov said. “I wish to thank the Coordination Commission for their on-going assistance and expertise and their input and enthusiasm over the last two days. I assured the Commission that the Games will continue to have the full support of the Azerbaijani government and people of Azerbaijan.

Keywords · Baku 2015 · European Games · International Olympic Committee · European Olympic Committees · EOC · IOC ·

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