SportMalta CEO Mark Cutajar said that Team Malta is ready to deliver its best possible result at the upcoming 2023 Games of the Small States of Europe.
The Maltese Olympic Committee and SportMalta are currently stepping up their preparations for the biennial Games that will get under way on Monday, May 29, and will come to a close on June 3.
The MOC will announce the contingent that will take part in the Games on May 12 with the hope that they will deliver Malta’s best-ever result in the Games.
“We are only three weeks away from the biggest sporting event hosted in Malta for the past 20 years,” Cutajar, the chairman of the organising committee, said.
“The preparations for these Games started seven years ago and we had a huge organising team involved. And today I stand here in a position to state that we are ready to deliver the best possible result for our country not only from an organisational point of view but also in terms of a sporting result.
“In the last months, we paid attention to every detail as we gave our athletes the best possible platform to arrive for the Games in top shape.
“That is why we have decided to put the team in a different hotel from other athletes to make sure they have a quiet surrounding where they can fully focus on their events.
“I feel obliged to pay tribute to the Maltese Olympic Committee Director of Sport Charlene Attard who could not have done more to ensure we give our athletes the best possible preparation.”
Cutajar said that the Local Organising Committee is doing everything in its power to give the best possible coverage to the Games and said that the PBS is coordinating with the other local TV stations to provide excellent coverage of the event.
Added to that, local newspapers are also set to publish a 2023 GSSE magazine that will provide information on the Games.
Cutajar announced that in the past few days a contract has been signed that would see the Floriana Granaries host the opening ceremony on May 29.
“The Opening Ceremony is going to be held on May 29 at the Floriana Granaries,” Cutajar announced.
“It’s going to be an opening ceremony of the highest level that will promote our country and will be screened in the other participating countries. Most importantly, the athletes will be at the heart of the ceremony, from start to finish.”
On his part, Julian Pace Bonello, the president of the Maltese Olympic Committee, said that the Games were an opportunity for the country to showcase its ability to host top sporting events.
“The 2023 GSSE are very important for our country as it is an opportunity to show that we are capable to host such an important event and at the same time ensure that the Maltese sporting community will unite behind its athletes,” Pace Bonello said.
“We will announce our team for the Games on May 12 and we have no doubt that our athletes will make us proud with a strong performance.”
On his part, Dr Clifton Grima, the Minister for Education and Sport, said that he has no doubts that the 2023 GSSE will remain in the history books of Maltese sport for many years for the right reasons.
“As I said on many an occasion, the government has in vested heavily in these Games as we have a firm belief that our athletes can deliver on this stage,” Dr Grima said.
“When in 2017, Mark Cutajar and Julian Pace Bonello approached me with the possibility to host these Games, I sensed that it was a great opportunity to put our country on the sporting map.
“It’s clear that the reality has changed from the last time Malta hosted the GSSE in 2003, as both the organisational and logistical challenges are far bigger.
“But I have only words of praise for the MOC, the SportMalta workers and all stakeholders who pulled towards the same direction and I am sure that this year will be inscribed in the country’s annals with letters of gold not only for the successful organisation but also for the results attained by our athletes.”
The government has forked out millions of euros for the organisation of the Games as well as funds for the technical preparation of the Maltese athletes. This investment has been unprecedented when compared to previous editions.
Asked whether the government will continue to invest heavily in future editions of the Games, Dr Grima had a clear mind.
“Investment in sport will remain a priority for our country,” the sports minister said.
“But after the Malta 2023 GSSE, the government’s investment will be focused on those athletes that will deliver good results in these Games. It’s high time that we start focusing on those athletes that deliver.
“No doubt the Malta 2023 GSSE is not the finish line but a launchpad for our athletes to be competitive in much more prestigious competition and those who show that they deserve our support will surely receive it.”
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