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“The Worlds in Riyadh will be outstanding!”

The IWF President Mohammed Jalood and the IWF Secretary General Antonio Urso were this weekend in Riyadh (KSA) to formally sign the host agreement for the organisation of the 2023 IWF World Championships, taking place in the Saudi capital from September 2-17. The two IWF dignitaries had also the occasion to meet with the Minister of Sport and President of the Saudi Olympic Committee, Mr Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal, with whom they exchanged a very fruitful discussion on the preparation of the IWF showcase. Finally, the IWF delegation also visited the Saudi Weightlifting Federation, where they were warmly welcome by its President Mohammed Alharbi (also IWF EB member and Secretary General of the Asian Weightlifting Federation).

“These World Championships will be outstanding, as the involvement and support of the Saudi authorities has been, and will certainly continue being, impressive. Weightlifting is a very popular and successful sport in the country and this is of course important for the achievement of our main competition of the year. All the conditions are met for an unforgettable event, where our athletes will be able to deliver superb performances,” considered the IWF President.

As a proof of this success, the IWF representatives were invited to attend the 26th General Assembly of the Saudi Olympic and Paralympic Sport. During the presentation of the various sports activities of the Olympic Committee, Saudi weightlifting was ranked first in the number of medals won in international events. As a result, President Mohammed Alharbi was personally awarded by the Minister of Sport.

On a more operational basis, the IWF Secretary General had the opportunity to be briefed on the upcoming stages of preparation for the Championships. The venue of the competition was particularly praised by Mr Urso: “It is a fantastic complex, offering many possibilities for an innovative presentation of our Sport and a smooth organisation of these World Championships. Our weightlifters will feel very happy with these conditions and will naturally give their best in the lead-up for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games”.

The IWF World Championships in Riyadh will be the pinnacle of the 2023 season and constitutes a privileged occasion to qualify for the Olympic rendezvous in the French capital. It will be held after the organisation of four continental championships – Pan-American (March 25-April 2 – Bariloche, ARG), European (April 15-23 – Yerevan, ARM), Asian (May 3-13 – Jinju, KOR) and African (May 11-20 – Tunis, TUN) – and before the staging of the Oceania showcase in Honiara (SOL), from November 20-24, 2023.