ABU DHABI: The Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC) has announced that the UAE capital will host the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) for the first time in the competition’s history in December.
Involving 44 different swimming events, the 15th edition of the tournament will be held at the state-of-the-art Etihad Arena – the UAE’s largest multi-purpose indoor entertainment venue, which opened this year and is located on Yas Island.
Aref Al-Awani, the ADSC’s general secretary, said: “We are absolutely delighted to bring the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) to Abu Dhabi later this year.
“This is set to be a huge event for Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, and the UAE with over 1,000 of the most talented short-course swimmers from around the world, fresh from the Olympic Games in Tokyo, showcasing their abilities in what we expect to be an exciting competition.
“This world championship event will further strengthen the emirate’s unique sporting offering, enhancing its reputation as a top global destination for sport, entertainment, leisure, and business,” he added.
The event, due to take place between Dec. 16 and 21, will showcase the very best of local and international talent, providing the opportunity for fans to watch top-quality competitive swimming action in the heart of Abu Dhabi for the first time.
Originally scheduled for 2020, the FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) will feature men’s and women’s events in all four strokes – freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, and butterfly – along with the individual medley and relays.
“The swimming championships is the latest addition to an ever-growing list of major sporting events to be hosted in Abu Dhabi recently, including UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship), the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the UAE Tour, and the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship,” Al-Awani said.
“The championships will be hosted in parallel with the FINA World Aquatics Convention, yet another important event on the global calendar, which will also take place on Yas Island.”
Julio Maglione, president of the Federation Internationale De Natation (FINA), said that the event would be one of the highlights of the 2021 sporting calendar.
“Having previously staged events such as the FINA High Diving World Cup and FINA Open Water Swim World Cup in Abu Dhabi, we know there is a huge appetite for top-quality sporting action among the local community.
“We are extremely proud to give fans in Abu Dhabi and the UAE another major event to look forward to at the end of a big year for sport,” he added.
President of the UAE Swimming Federation, Sultan Al-Samahi, said hosting the FINA championships was pivotal in the progression and development of swimming throughout the country.
“We look forward to working with FINA and the LOC (local organizing committee) to ensure that this event creates a positive impact on our local athletes over the coming months, and hope that the whole country is ready to cheer on the Emirati athletes who will line up against the world’s best in December,” he added.
To coincide with the announcement of the event, the official FINA World Swimming Championships (25m) brand logo, which symbolizes the past and present, was also unveiled.
Inspired by Abu Dhabi’s pearl diving heritage, the logo features a swimmer constructed from pearls who is powering through the water, which is representative of both the city’s proud history and the competitive nature of the tournament itself.