1,000 athletes compete in Games of the Small States of Europe in Malta

Roughly 1,000 athletes from nine European countries have congregated in Malta for the 19th edition of the Games of the Small States of Europe (GSSE), commencing with a vibrant opening ceremony on Monday.

These athletes hail from Andorra, Cyprus, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, and San Marino. They are set to compete across 10 sporting disciplines from Monday through June 3.

The GSSE is an exclusive competition for European countries with populations under one million, with the aim to level the playing field concerning demographics and resources.

The sports on the program include athletics, table tennis, sailing, basketball, rugby sevens, judo, shooting, squash, swimming, and tennis.

During the opening ceremony, Malta’s Prime Minister, Robert Abela, welcomed the teams from all participating countries, urging athletes to uphold the principles of fair play and sportsmanship.

Abela noted that Malta has invested heavily to upgrade its sporting facilities, not only for the current games but also as a legacy for the future.

“These games provide the perfect opportunity to highlight our shared values of sports, solidarity, and equality in the first games since the COVID-19 pandemic,” he stated.

To the athletes, who have been training rigorously for months, he wished them the best of luck and hoped they deliver their finest performance in this “grand celebration of sports.” ■

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