Team Shetland may be largest ever for 'Jersey 2015'
News Release - Wed 14th May 2014
With just over 13 months to go until the 2015 NatWest Island Games in Jersey, Team Shetland may be the largest Games Team ever to travel off-island, with an estimated 165 competitors and officials expected to represent Shetland at the event.
Although the official closing date for event entries isn't until the end of the year, eleven local sports have now declared their interest in competing at the 2015 Games - archery, athletics, badminton, cycling, football, golf, sailing, shooting, swimming, table tennis and triathlon. Most sports have also indicated that they wish to take the maximum numbers permissible under the Games bylaws.
Both the Shetland men's and women's football teams expect to compete in Jersey. This will be the first turn out for the women's team at the Games since competing on home soil in 2005; and for the men it will be their first Games since Åland in 2009. The combination of both teams alone will add almost forty competitors to the overall Team size.
Interest in the 2015 Games is high among many competing islands, following a lower entry for the 2013 Games in Bermuda. Although it was seen as a successful event, it is thought that the high costs of travel and accommodation were factors that reduced team sizes for many Island Teams. By contrast, 'Jersey 2015' is expected to attract around 4000 participants and may be the largest multi-sport event in the British Isles that year.
Andrew Inkster, Chairman of Shetland Island Games Association said - "As always, we began our planning soon after our return from the last Games. We've already made some firm decisions about our travel plans and paid a deposit to secure our hotel accommodation. I'm delighted that we have such great local interest in the next Games and that we could have the largest ever team travelling off-island to represent Shetland."
Local engineering firm Malakoff Limited is the current Overall Sponsor of Team Shetland, in a deal made in 2013 to support the participation of the best of Shetland's sportspeople at the NatWest Island Games.