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Glasgow city centre gearing up for the games – Picture courtesy of Stephen Jenkins/ISN

Article by Stephen Jenkins

  July20th, 2014 (ISN) In 3 days time the 20th Commonwealth Games kicks off in Glasgow.  The temperature is rising in the city under the July sun and so is the buzz around the biggest sporting event Scotland has ever seen.  6500 athletes and officials from 71 countries are arriving at the athletes village between now and July the 23rd, Team Canada started arriving last week with their officials and coaches moving into the Dalmarnock site three days ago.  The Canada men’s rugby 7’s team are on their way as I’m writing this article. Connor Baird, 23 year old fly half, tweeted his excitement at flying to Glasgow today @connorbraid. 

The athletes are arriving, the venues are spectacular and the weather is beautiful – it looks like a great start to the Games already.  There are 17 sports at this Commonwealth Games, split into 10 core sports that take place at every Games (Athletics, Aquatics, Badminton, Boxing, Hockey, Lawn Bowls, Netball, Rugby 7’s, Squash and Weightlifting) as well as 7 selected sports selected for these Games (Cycling, Gymnastics, Judo, Shooting, Table Tennis, Triathlon and Wrestling).

Judo makes its 3rd appearance as a selected sport since its inclusion in the Commonwealth Games in the 1990 New Zealand Games.  Historically Scotland has performed well in the Judo events, collecting 10 medals in Manchester in 2002, making the Judo Team the most successful Scottish team of those Games.  At ISN we interviewed Scottish sisters Louise and Kimberley Renicks about their unique relationship and hopes for the Games.

While out enjoying the buzz the Games are creating in Glasgow I bumped into four young sports fans who are looking forward to the Games.  Friends Morgan Casey, Kevin Keatings, Cameron McBride and Chris McCourt spoke about their excitement about the Games coming to Glasgow, especially Morgan as he competes with a local Judo club and Cameron who plays for his school Hockey team.  Chris said that “I’m looking forward to seeing so many different sports in my home city and hopefully it’ll inspire me to take up a sport I’ve never thought about before.”  Kevin told me that the four have already been to the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome and are keen on trying out the facilities on offer, especially the cycling training that’s available.  Who knows, one of them could be the next Chris Hoy! Morgan backed that up, saying that the games can inspire a new generation of athletes by showing them what is possible if they work hard.  I wonder how many kids watching the Games this year could find themselves in Japan competing in the 2020 Olympics.


Friends Morgan Casey, Kevin Keatings, Cameron McBride and Chris McCourt discuss the games – Picture courtesy of Stephen Jenkins/ISN


I asked the four if they could name the 10 core sports that take place at every Commonwealth Games, some of their answers were a little wide of the mark (baseball?!?) but they did manage to score a respectable 7 out of 10, missing out on Rugby, Netball and Bowls.  Hopefully by the end of the Games they’ll be able to name all 17 sports!


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