THE UNIVERSITY of Worcester will host the first ever women’s wheelchair and amputee world games next summer as part of its continued bid to make the city a leader in inclusive sport.
The International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation (IWAS) will host the inaugural IWAS Women’s World Games at the University from Monday, August 27 to Monday, September 3, 2018.
Female athletes with any physical impairment, aged 14 and upwards, will be invited to the seven-day competition, where around 200 participants from approximately 30 different countries will compete in a preliminary sports programme of athletics, badminton, swimming, table tennis, para taekwondo and wheelchair fencing.
The events will take place at Malvern College, Nunnery Wood Sports Complex and the state-of-the-art facilities at the University of Worcester Arena, which was the country’s first purpose-designed arena for athletes with physical impairments when it opened four years ago.
IWAS, previously known as the International Stoke Mandeville Games Federation, were the founders of the Paralympic Games.
Mick Donovan, deputy pro vice chancellor of the University and head of the Institute of Sport and Exercise Science, said: “We’re delighted to be bringing the first ever IWAS Women’s World Games to Worcester for what we’re sure will be a wonderful event, and one which will really capture the imagination of the local community.
“The IWAS tournament represents all that we stand for at Worcester – giving athletes of every physical ability the chance to come together to compete and enjoy sport.”
Charmaine Hooper, chief executive officer at IWAS, said: “We’ve always been committed to the development of sporting opportunities for all athletes with a physical impairment to maximise their potential, without focusing solely on elite athletes.
“With the development and promotion of sport for female athletes a key objective of IWAS, we’re delighted to kick-start this project with the hosting of the first IWAS Women’s World Games in Worcester.
“Partnered with the wealth of experience and knowledge at the University, we’re sure the event will be a great success and will inspire women and girls around the world to participate and compete in sport.”