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Team Shetland planning ahead for Bermuda 2013

 24th January 2012

Shetland Island Games Association is encouraging any local sports organisations who wish to take part in the 2013 NatWest Island Games to join the planning discussions soon.

The two-yearly Games, last held in the Isle of Wight in 2011, attracts teams from 24 competing islands around the world, including Shetland, Orkney and the Western Isles.   At the last two Games, Shetland sent a team of around 90 participants, competing in ten sports on each occasion.  In 2011, Shetland finished a creditable tenth place overall, as a result of some outstanding gold medal wins in swimming, athletics and cycling.

The next Games, due to be held in Bermuda in July 2013 will be the first time that the event has travelled across the Atlantic.  For the island teams from Europe, the distance and travel costs involved will present a new challenge. Travel to and from Bermuda is costly and the average cost of accommodation is high, as the island caters for a generally up-market tourist industry.

The first entry deadline for all islands will be early January 2013, although Shetland Island Games Association is reminding potential competitors that planning has already begun.

Andrew Inkster, Chairman of Shetland Island Games Association commented on the Team's discussions to date - "Bermuda 2013 will be a big ask for all competitors who would like to take part.  It will be our most expensive Games to date and we would really like to plan our travel early and raise funds towards everyone's costs.   We really need to know from local sports organisations within the next couple of months if they intend to take part in the next Games."

After successful performances at the 2011 Games, Shetland Swim Team has already begun planning for 2013.  Lesley Hutchison from Shetland Swimming Association, commented - "The Shetland Swim Team had a fanastic Games in the Isle of Wight but the two year period between Games passes really quickly.  We plan to take a full team again to Bermuda and the swimmers have been in training for some time now.  To help towards our costs we have a number of fundraising plans including raffles, backpacking, word competitions and a coffee afternoon at the Gulberwick Hall on Sunday 25th March.  The swimmers are a younger group of competitors and we are grateful for the support that we are receiving."

Andrew Inkster concluded - "We expect to have a smaller team than in recent Games but there is no doubt that Team Shetland will be at the next Games.  The further afield islands of Bermuda, Falkland and St. Helena always send a team to Europe, so it is only right that we return the favour on this occasion."

The 2013 NatWest Island Games will take place in Bermuda from 13-19 July and will include the fourteen sports of athletics, badminton, basketball, cycling, football, golf, gymnastics, sailing, shooting, squash, swimming, tennis, triathlon, volleyball.  More information is available at:  www.natwestislandgames2013.com  Shetland Island Games Association also has Team Shetland information at:  www.siga.org.uk