Pakistan’s contingent reach Austria for Special Olympics World Winter Games

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PESHAWAR, Mar 14 (APP): Pakistan’s 23-member contingent reached Austria on Tuesday to feature in the Special Olympics World Winter Games to be starting from from March, 18.
The delegation headed by Anis-ur-Rehman comprises male and female players who will showcase their talent in the ski competitions during the prestigious extravaganza.
In the previous edition, held in Los Angeles, in 2015, Pakistan players gave superb performances and collected as many as 55 medals.
Amjad Aziz Malik, delegate with the team, while talking to APP on phone said soon after reaching in Austria.
He said, “Pakistani team has passed through vigorous training at Naltar, Gilgit Baltistan, under the supervision of expert coaches.
“Everyone is well-prepared for the challenge and I hope Pakistan will produce better results,” he said.
The players comprising Hamza Aslam, Hameezud Din, Abdullah, Huzaifa Qazi, Parvaiz, Usama, Mehvish Tufail, Tehmina, Sabahat Tariq, Ramsha, Naeem and Farah Ehsan are in cheerful mood, ready for giving good performance in different events, he added.
He said, the 2017 Special Olympics World Winter Games are set to begin in Austria, where nearly 2,700 athletes from 107 countries including Pakistan will be competing for top honors.
He disclosed that the European nation is hosting the Games for a second time having also done so in 1993 when they were staged outside the United States for the first time.
A total of nine disciplines will be contested across the 12 days of action, including Alpine skiing, figure skating, floorball, floor hockey, Nordic skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, speed skating and stick shooting.
The Convention Center Graz will play host to floorball, floor hockey and stick shooting, while the Ice-Stadium Graz-Liebenau will stage figure skating and speed skating, he said.
He said, alpine skiing and snowboarding will take place at Rohrmoos-Untertal, with Nordic skiing and snowshoeing to be held in Ramsau Am Dachstein.
The Opening Ceremony, which is scheduled for Saturday (March 18) despite the action getting underway on Wednesday, is due to be hosted by the Planai-Stadion in Schladming.
The Stadium Graz-Liebenau has been chosen to stage the closing ceremony on March 24.
This year’s marks the 11th edition of the Special Olympics World Winter Games, which were last held in South Korean Pyeongchang – hosts of the next year’s Winter Olympic Games – in 2013.
“Special Olympics Healthy Athletes”, described as largest public health program for people with intellectual disabilities worldwide, will run alongside the event, Amjad Aziz Malik, who is also Secretary General of the AIPs Asia, having 9000 sports working journalists as members, said.
The next edition of the Special Olympics World Summer Games is due to take place in United Arab Emirates’ capital Abu Dhabi in 2019.