The 2023 Island Games will take place next year in Madagascar. One year after the sporting event, an uncertainty persists about the date, the rules and the participation of women in certain disciplines.
Four years after the 2019 Island Games in Mauritius, the Island Games are back. The 11th edition will take place next year, in 2023, in Madagascar. The Big Island, Mauritius, Comoros, Mayotte, Seychelles, Maldives and Reunion will compete in 25 disciplines. But a year after the Games, the championships are still in the dark.
There are still unanswered questions on the exact date and the regulation: “One year after the Games, the most complicated thing to master is the general organization in Madagascar. With the general regulation we know that it doesn’t change from one game to the next “ entrust Jean-Paul Nanguet, member of the Regional Olympic and Sports Committee, Cros.
“But our concern is to see how it is written and whether they will all be in the same boat. For example, if all categories of judo or karate will be considered “ He adds. “And then there is the date. We must organize ourselves to free teachers and students “, continues Jean-Paul Nanguet. A date not yet fixed given the various sporting events that will take place between July and August 2023.
Another unclear point: it is the impossibility for women to participate in competitions in certain disciplines, such as cycling, beach soccer or surfing. For the Reunion surf championship, “It goes against the values of sport. The French Surfing Federation is committed to ensuring that there is more and more equality within the two categories, for both men and women. “.
Quentin César, development consultant within the Reunion Island Surfing League, also points out that “if there are no competitors in line, I think there will be no Reunion surf championship [aux Jeux 2023]”. Quentin César, on the other hand, remains optimistic about a change: “perhaps in the next few months we will be able to meet the Malagasy federation. Le Cros is optimistic. We will try to contact the other islands “.
As for the large number of disciplines, Cros is not worried. “Madagascar announced it from the beginning: ready to welcome 3,000 athletes. When the islands proposed disciplines, they did not hesitate. They have the infrastructure for: they have hotels, two Olympic-sized swimming pools under construction but also apparently a new gym. So we have every reason to say that it can only be fine “.
Pending more details from the Big Island, the leagues and their athletes are preparing. The State, the Region and the Department help them financially in their organization. “Substantial means are put on the table“explains Nicolas Vouillon, deputy of the regional academic delegation for youth, engagement and sport, Drajes.”Réunion is France in the heart of the Indian Ocean. The Games speak of competition, but also of fraternity, relationships, historical ties that you must be able to maintain “. He adds.