RIYADH: Riyadh’s King Fahd International Stadium lit up in a spectacular show of culture, song and dance earlier this week for the opening ceremony of the Saudi Games 2023.
The ceremony signaled the start of another historic sporting event in Saudi Arabia and featured a variety of performances, a ceremonial torch lighting, fireworks and light shows. Together, it created an entertaining atmosphere for the audience with French music producer DJ Snake also giving an unforgettable performance.
The Saudi Games, the biggest athletic event in the Kingdom, celebrate their second season this year. The competition kicked off on Nov. 27 following formal trials which ended in October.
Over 6,000 athletes will compete in a cumulative 53 events until Dec. 10. This year, athletes from a variety of disciplines including tennis, boxing, archery, wrestling and Thai boxing were invited to take part.
These ambitions ... their seeds were implemented and empowered by the crown prince with his full encouragement.
Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki, Saudi sports minister
“The opening ceremony was wonderful. It was well organized, too. I enjoyed the atmosphere very much, my wife and my children as well,” said attendee Ahmad Bunyan.
A large number of people from across all age groups and numerous countries gave the opening ceremony a local and international audience. Saudi Minister of Sports Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki gave a speech prior to the official announcement of the beginning of the games. He noted the support and encouragement from King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, which has inspired many to strive towards and succeed in reaching their goals.
“These ambitions … their seeds were implemented and empowered by the crown prince with his full encouragement,” Prince Abdulaziz added.
“We will meet again, hoping for our meeting to be renewed in a sports event where our champions from all over the Kingdom gather, to start a new section of making heroes journey in the second edition of the Saudi games, which opens an opportunity for more than 6000 athletes.”
The organizing committee prepared a song for the opening of the tournament, called “Among Us Heroes.” It was performed by Saudi artists such as Dalia Mubarak, Zeina Imad and Ayed Youssef, along with Kuwaiti artist Badr Al-Shuaibi.