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Singapore to host inaugural Youth Olympics

21st July 2010 Print

Singapore is putting the final touches to its preparations as the island gets ready to make Olympic history by hosting the world’s first ever Youth Olympic Games, which will take place from 16th to 26th August 2010.

The inaugural Games, which are expected to bring over 500,000 spectators to Asia’s sporting capital, will offer an abundance of exciting action across the island over the course of this 12-day event. As well as the chance to see 3,600 of the best young athletes from around the world – including Team GB’s platform diving champion, Tom Daley – compete at this historic event, visitors can enjoy the thrill of a torch relay run when the Olympic flame arrives in Singapore after journeying to five different continents.

With the sporting action taking place across Singapore, spectators will be able to experience the electric atmosphere of the football competition at the Jalan Besar Stadium nearby to Singapore’s colourful Little India; catch all the courtside drama with basketball contests at *SCAPE in the middle of Orchard Road; enjoy great photo opportunities of Singapore’s stunning skyline while cheering for their favourite rower at Marina Reservoir; and get behind their national athlete competing in the triathlon at East Coast Park, which is Singapore’s largest and most popular beach and park.

The Youth Olympic Games is a new international sporting event introduced for the first time ever by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). It will see young athletes – aged between 14 and 18 years old – from over 200 nations compete in all 26 sports on the programme for the 2012 London Olympic Games. The IOC hopes the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games will inspire young people around the world to participate in sport and embrace the Olympic values.

Daley, the 2009 World and 2008 European 10 metre platform diving champion, will represent Team GB alongside 40 of Britain’s greatest young sporting talent. Also named on the team are Victoria Ohuruogu, the 400 metre England indoor under-20 champion; gymnast Sam Oldham who achieved a hat-trick of gold medals at this year’s European Junior Championships; and tennis star Oliver Goulding, Britain’s current under-18 number one who made it to the semi-finals of Wimbledon last month.

Athletes will also be joined by 1,450 officials, 1,500 media representatives and 20,000 local and international volunteers. The BBC will broadcast rolling highlights of the Games from Singapore on BBC Sport, BBC News Channel, BBC iPlayer, Blue Peter and Newsround.

Also attending will be 30 under-privileged young students from London’s Southwark who have been working tirelessly to raise funds to attend the Games. To date, they have achieved a total of £41,000 in less than six months through volunteer work and charity events. The 30 young people have been drawn from diverse inner London communities and speak over six community languages. They will be using their skills to volunteer at the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore where they will work as National Olympic Committee assistants, interpreters and other roles, including support for the competing athletes. The Singapore Tourism Board is working closely with the young students to provide them with an excellent opportunity to actively participate in one of the world’s biggest multi-sport events.

The Youth Olympic Games is set to further enhance Singapore’s status as a great sporting destination and will complement the island’s extensive calendar of year-round events. In addition to this new event, Singapore is set to play host to the Singtel Singapore Formula One Grand Prix for the third consecutive year in September 2010.