The International World Games Association (IWGA) announced the official sports programme for The World Games 2021 Birmingham. A total of 30 sports, featuring 3,600 athletes from more than 100 countries, will compete for gold in Birmingham, Alabama, between July 15-25, 2021.
“This is a big day for The World Games, and for Birmingham,” said DJ Mackovets, CEO of The World Games 2021 Birmingham. “We’re excited to bring these sports – some of which likely will be new and unique to sports fans – to our city. But more importantly, we’re thrilled about Birmingham’s opportunity to shine on an international stage.”
“This is an exciting time as we learn more about the sports that will be part of The World Games Birmingham 2021. They are a combination of familiar sports and a few lesser-known ones that many people will come to love,” said Birmingham Mayor Randall L. Woodfin. “As we prepare to host the world in 2021, we also have a great opportunity to learn more about the incredible athletes and competition heading to our city. We’ll be ready.”
The World Games 2021 Birmingham will celebrate the return of two sports to competition, including racquetball (last played in 2013) and softball (last played in 1985). Several of the 30 sports selected, including bowling, finswimming, gymnastics, karate, powerlifting, racquetball, roller sports, softball, tug of war and water ski, were also on the official programme of the first World Games – and the only other Games to be held in the United States – in Santa Clara, California, in 1981.
The full list of official sports at The World Games 2021 Birmingham includes:
ARTISTIC & DANCE SPORT
World DanceSport Federation
International Gymnastics Federation
Ju-Jitsu International Federation
World Karate Federation
World Association of Kickboxing Organizations
International Federation of Muaythai Amateur
International Sumo Federation
International Canoe Federation
International Fistball Association
International Floorball Federation
International Handball Federation
International Korfball Federation
Federation of International Lacrosse
International Racquetball Federation
World Baseball Softball Confederation
World Squash Federation
World Archery Federation
World Confederation of Billiards Sports
World Confederation of Boules Sports
International Powerlifting Federation
Tug of War
Tug of War International Federation
The World Air Sports Federation
World Underwater Federation
World Flying Disc Federation
International Life Saving Federation
International Orienteering Federation
International Federation of Sport Climbing
Waterski & Wakeboard
International Waterski & Wakeboard Federation
"I'm sure this programme will be attractive for spectators, both on site and on screen,” said International World Games CEO Joachim Gossow. “It strikes a good balance between team and individual sports, and demands widely varying skills, such as strength, precision, control, artistry, endurance, courage and agility. We took account of all the reports on last year's Wroclaw Games and the performance of our various federations. Now we just have to fine tune the specific events in association with our federations. We're all set for great Games in Birmingham 2021."
In addition to the 30 official sports selected by the IWGA, Birmingham, as host city, has the opportunity to select up to five invitational sports to include in the programme. Three of those invitational sports – lacrosse, wheelchair basketball and wheelchair rugby – also were announced on Monday.
The 2021 edition of The World Games will mark the 40th anniversary of the Games, and the first time the event has returned to the United States since 1981. The event, which also features the traditional pageantry of an Opening Ceremony and concludes with a Closing Ceremony celebration, is projected to generate $256 million in economic impact on the city of Birmingham over the course of 11 days.
About the Author
Shekhar Dhingra is a sports journalist with 1.5 years of experience, having worked with sports business website "Market4Sports". He resides in New Delhi and is a die-hard sports fan with special affection for cricket and badminton. He desperately waits for weekend to relax his soul by playing cricket.