The 19th edition of the Mediterranean Games (JM-2021), initially scheduled from 25 June to 5 July 2021 in Oran, western Algeria, has been postponed till 2022, at the request of the International Council of Mediterranean Games, due to the current situation marked by the worrying spread of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), announced Tuesday the Minister of Youth and Sports, Sid Ali Khaldi.
“The Algerian Government and the International Committee for the Mediterranean Games (ICMG) have taken the joint decision to postpone, by one year, the Mediterranean Games of Oran which will now be held in the year 2022, at the request of the ICMG,” said in Algiers Sid Ali Khaldi who was accompanied by Amar Addadi, President of the ICMG.
According to the Minister, this decision was taken by both parties after consultation and exhaustive evaluation of the current context prevailing in the world, marked by the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to the postponement of many international sports events and competitions, including the Tokyo-2020 Olympic Games, to 2021.
“The postponement of the Mediterranean Games in Oran is mainly motivated by the common concern to rearrange their periodicity in relation to the Olympic calendar, to enhance the quality of the Games and their influence as well as to preserve the health of the athletes on the one hand and to ensure their optimal preparation for this important sporting event on the other hand,” he said.
For his part, Mr Amar Addadi hailed the decision taken by the Algerian Government, stressing that the Mediterranean body has requested the postponement of the 19th edition of Oran in relation to the rescheduling of the Olympic Games-2020 in Tokyo which will take place in 2021.
“The ICMG has requested the postponement of the 19th edition of the Mediterranean Games to 2022 for reasons that are essentially linked to the Olympic calendar”, he explained, adding that “the Organizing Committee will have more time to meet all the conditions and thus offer all Mediterranean athletes a brilliant edition that raises the brand image of Algeria higher”.
The President of the ICMG reiterated the commitment of his body to pursuing and consolidating cooperation in order to ensure the “optimal” conditions for a “resounding” success of the Oran mega sporting event.
“Athletes are increasingly penalized by the halt in the preparation process following the closure of sports structures. I think that this postponement will allow the entire Mediterranean sports movement to better prepare for this event in the best possible conditions,” Mr Addadi stressed.
As a reminder, the Tokyo Olympic Games, initially scheduled from 24 July to 9 August 2020 before being postponed due to coronavirus pandemic, will finally take place from 23 July to 8 August 2021.