By Anil John/Sports Editor
Doha is bidding for the 2019 Military World Games, and most likely will get to host the event, it emerged yesterday.
At a press conference held at the Losail Shooting Complex ahead of the second CISM International Shotgun Championship starting today, officials revealed that Qatar would be shortly putting in a bid for the prestigious event.
CSIM, which represents more than 100 countries, stands for Conseil International du Sport Militaire, or the international military sports council. It is a body that seeks to promote peace and understanding between nations by organising regular sporting competitions for members of the armed forces.
Lt Col Walter Borghino, the president of the CISM Sports Commission, praised Qatar for its outstanding sports facilities and organisational abilities, saying Doha would be an ideal host city.
“I am sure Qatar with all its experience in hosting world class international events will put up a great show if Doha wins the 2019 bid,” Borghino said with a smile, perhaps indicating that Doha is the favourite, although no prospective rival city was mentioned.
Borghino, dressed in his military outfit, added that the CISM was waiting for an official letter of intent from the sporting authorities in Qatar before the formal bidding process gets underway.
The Military World Games were launched in Rome in 1995 to celebrate the completion of 50 years after the end of the Second World War. Rio de Janerio hosted the Games in 2011 with the South Korean city of Mungyeong due next in 2015.
Meanwhile, Qatar will be fielding 12 shooters in the CISM International Shotgun Championship in which 10 countries are taking part. Qatar’s campaign will be led by Olympian Rashid al-Athba in the competition.
Two-times Olympic bronze medallist Fehaid al-Deehani of Kuwait, 2013 World Championship silver medallist Simona Scocchetti of Italy and junior World Championship silver medal winner Valerio Andreoni, also of Italy, are the notable entries.
“The competition is going to be very intense and I am sure everybody will put in their best performance,” Qatar Shooting and Archery Federation president Mohamed Ali al-Maadeed said, hoping that Qatar will come out with flying colours.
After a formal opening ceremony at the Losail Shooting Complex today, competitions begin at 9am tomorrow with the men’s and women’s trap and skeet.
The event concludes on Saturday afternoon followed by the closing ceremony.