The World Games 2017 opened with a spectacular star-studded Opening Ceremony. IOC President Dr. Thomas Bach was present as the 10th edition of the Games got underway and was joined on stage by International World Games Association President José Perurena and the Mayor of Wrocław, Rafał Dutkiewicz.
Artists performing at the Ceremony, attended by around 40000 people organisers claimed, included Dawid Kwiatkowski, dubbed the “Polish Justin Bieber”, Radzimir Dębski, Kamil Bednarek and Steve Nash alongside the Turntable Orchestra.
IOC President Dr. Bach addressed over 3,000 athletes from over 100 countries, encouraging them to “give it your best and always remember to compete in the spirit of Excellence, Respect and Fair Play”. The stadium and especially the athletes gave this a standing ovation.
IWGA President Jose Perurena stated “Even if you don’t win a medal, you will have memorable experiences to look back on,” the Spaniard told them.
“The City authorities and their Organising Committee have prepared first-class venues and made good administrative arrangements.
“Now it is up to you, the spectators, to provide a great atmosphere for all the competitions.”
The Games feature sports and disciplines that are not on the Olympic programme.
Countries like Germany, Australia, France, United Kingdom, Italy, Japan and Brazil have come with huge numbers, and today the first medals will be awarded in Gymnastics, Fin Swimming, Speed Skating and Sport Climbing.
Muaythai is included in this year’s edition as a full medal sport, with athletes from over 40 countries competing and the IOC are watching the games closely as sports aim to impressed with hopes for future OG inclusion.
Sports like rugby, karate, sports climbing all too the leap from the World Games into the Olympic Games. The IOC President started further “The World Games are a celebration of the diversity of sport, and this is a unique opportunity for sports.”
This is why the IOC is in such support of these Games, which gives athletes the opportunity of a lifetime.