First IWAS Women’s World Games postponed
The competition - the first in history and a major milestone in the development of women’s sports for athletes with physical impairments - was due to open on 27 August 2018.
The International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation (IWAS) has announced the indefinite postponement of the IWAS Women’s World Games in Worcester, Great Britain, due to insufficient entries.
The competition – the first in history and a major milestone in the development of women’s sports for athletes with physical impairments – was due to open on 27 August 2018.
Entries for four of the five sports on the programme – Para athletics, Para badminton, table tennis and wheelchair fencing have been low with the deadline for countries looming on 23 July. Para taekwondo was set to be the most competitive as it offered qualification points for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
However, following the withdrawal of World Taekwondo from the event citing entry numbers and financial viability on 13 June, the decision was made by the IWAS Games Committee to postpone the event.
IWAS President Rudi Van Den Abbeele said: “We are very, very disappointed to have to re-schedule the IWAS Women’s World Games. With just over two months to go, we were excited about holding a pioneering competition where female athletes could enjoy a unique platform to shine.
“However we also feel strongly that all our events should be as competitive as possible. The athletes deserve to face a deep field, especially as for some it will be their first international event.
“Unfortunately we could not meet this aim on this occasion. The entries, especially without Para taekwondo, were too low to make the event viable.
“But we are not giving-up on this project. We have received fantastic support from the University of Worcester and those countries who entered teams. Their commitment has shown that we are not alone in believing an IWAS Women’s World Games would be a great addition to our programme.
“It is very important that we continue to promote and support the development of female athletes in all sports, for our members and for Para sport around the world. We will go back to the drawing board and make an announcement shortly for the re-scheduling of the event.
“I encourage more countries to support us in our future endeavours. With increasing medal events for female athletes on the Paralympic programme, it is definitely worth making the investment.”
The IWAS Women’s World Games are part of a series of World Games organised around the world.
The IWAS Youth World Games will take place in Athlone, Ireland, from 2-5 July and will feature 165 athletes from 16 countries. IWAS also organises a World Games every two years.