Today marks 200 days until the return of the Arafura Games, and participation numbers have received a boost with Macau, China confirming it will send a delegation of athletes to take part.
In more good news, the International Muaythai Federation Amateur has confirmed it has received expressions of interest from more than 250 athletes and officials from over 30 nations to participate in the Arafura Games, which will be the first of a number of qualifying events for the World Games Muaythai competition in Birmingham in 2021.
Weightlifting is expecting more than 30 athletes from 18 Oceania nations and Table Tennis will have athletes from at least 10 nations with the Oceania Para Table Tennis competition an important qualifier for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
The Territory Labor Government made an election promise to bring back the Arafura Games after they were scrapped by the former CLP government. The Games will run from April 26 until May 4, 2019.
As stated by Minister for the Arafura Games, Ken Vowles:
We promised to bring back the Arafura Games after they were dumped by the CLP and now we are 200 days away until they return.
The Arafura Games build relationships with our Asia-Pacific neighbours which will create business opportunities and jobs for Territorians.
At the last Arafura Games in 2011 Macau sent the second-largest contingent of athletes and officials, with more than 150 taking part. And with the Territory Labor Government delivering direct flights between Darwin and Shenzhen, it is now easy for them to get here Shenzhen is a short ferry ride from Macau.
As stated by Assistant Minister for the Arafura Games, Kate Worden:
As well as the countries who have already signed up China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Timor-Leste, Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu we are also expecting plenty of athletes from across Australia, with all states and territories represented.
We recently announced the local companies who will host the Opening and Closing celebrations for the Games Creative Accomplice and Party Passport and athlete registrations open in 18 days, at 9am on October 26.
There are so many ways for Territorians to take part in these Games, including as volunteers. Visit arafuragames.com.au to find out more.