The World Games 2021 start with a ball! On the first day of competition of the eleventh edition of the Multisport event in Birmingham, Alabama – on 16th July in three years’ time – the decisions in DanceSport in the disciplines Latin American and Rock'nRoll are on the provisional programme.
The first schedule for the The World Games 2021 was presented by Sebastian Riediger, IWGA Head of IF and Games Services, during the Competition Managers Meeting in October. For the final on 25th July, among other sports, the top gymnasts will present their elegant routines in their fight for gold. This can also be seen in the first draft.
Sebastian Riediger explained that changes are still possible. He cited the requirements of the host broadcaster and the agency for the sale of TV rights as one possible reason for these changes. However, experience from the past shows that the first draft already has a high degree of commitment, and that changes usually only occur in the initial displays of the events within one day.
A total of ten days of competition are planned for The World Games 2021. 30 sports in the official list and 4 (possibly 5) invitation sports will be presented during the Games in Birmingham, Alabama. In all, over 216 medal events are there to attract the audiences. A look at the first draft shows that sports fans should make a special note for Sunday 18th July and Saturday 25th July.
On those days, there will be 34 decisions on the programme. The day with the lowest number of anthems for the winners will be Wednesday, when the current schedule only provides for eleven award ceremonies. Nevertheless, Wednesday will be one of the busiest days of the event: in all, 21 competitions will take place on 21st July. Only on the Friday and Saturday following will there be more venues in use; 22 competitions will take place on each of those days.
The largest number of athletes to be in action on one day is expected to be on Tuesday 20th July: more than 3,000 athletes will compete that day in The World Games 2021. The reason for this is the team sports, which all run over several days. For example, more than 200 athletes are looking for success in the Beach Handball tournament. Over 140 women play in the Softball competition. The lowest number of athletes is foreseen for the final day, Sunday 25th July; approximately 1,800 competitors are scheduled for competition Day Ten. During the whole week, 3,600 athletes compete.
The Birmingham Organising Committee is preparing more than 20 venues for the ten days of competition. The exact number cannot yet be stated, because not all venues have yet been approved by the International Federations, as Steve Mistrot, Head of the Sports Department, explains. “During the Competition Manager Meeting, it became apparent that some of the foreseen competition venues need to be reviewed in more detail with the Federations. In case of a decline of a venue for technical reasons, we have fortunately a large sports infrastructure in Birmingham, so we can start to consider with the respective IFs about possible alternatives. Three years before the Games, there is enough time to find an optimal solution for every sport," says Steve Mistrot.
The first gold medal at The World Games 2021 is expected to be awarded in one of the lightweight Karate classes. A national anthem will be played for the last time in the late afternoon of 25th July, at one of the billiard tables.
In connection with the schedule, Sebastian Riediger draws attention to another special feature of The World Games. For the first time, competitions in Para-Sports will be part of the programme. Wheelchair Basketball (men and women) and Wheelchair Rugby (men) are represented as invitational sports proposed by the Birmingham Organising Committee. "We have integrated these competitions into the schedule as part of the overall programme. We also see this as a sign that The World Games celebrate the diversity of sport in every respect. The competitions in the two disabled sports arenas belong to this diversity of sport," Sebastian Riediger stated.
The World Games is a multi-sport event staged every four years by the International World Games Association under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee. The 11th edition of The World Games will be held in Birmingham, Alabama, USA, 15-25 July 2021. 3,600 athletes from over 30 sports and 100 countries will take part in the Games.