Gib athletes set off for Island Games

Rae Slater on Flickr

NatWest Island Games

TWO HUNDRED Gibraltarian athletes head off to Jersey today to take part in the NatWest Island Games, which will open tomorrow (Saturday June 27.) The games take place every two years, bringing together sports people representing small islands across the world from the Faroe Islands, to Bermuda, to the Falkland Islands.
The games were founded by the Isle of Man in 1985, and Gibraltar joined the competing islands in 1987, going on to host the 10-year anniversary games in 1995.
There are 14 sports in all at this year’s event, with Gib sending competitors in ten disciplines, including athletics, swimming and sailing. They’re all hoping to add to the Rock’s tally of 166 medals from previous years, which at the moment places the team midway up the medal table at 13th of 27 participating nations.
The games aim to harness the independent spirit and determination of islanders, to exemplify sporting achievement. “Thanks to the NatWest Island Games,” the organizing body states, “athletes no longer have to look to the mainland to compete at international level—they have the chance to represent their own community and raise the profile of even the smallest island.”
That’s worked exceptionally well for many participants, perhaps most notably Isle of Man cyclist Mark Cavendish MBE, who began his international career in the Island Games.
This year’s games continue next week until Friday July 3. Good luck to the Gib athletes!

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