Perth will host the 2023 World Transplant Games in what has been described as a major sporting coup for Australia.
The Federal Government announced yesterday (Monday) that it will provide Transplant Australia with $600,000 towards its preparations for the event, which is expected to attract more than 1,300 athletes and thousands more supporters from around the world.
Inspiration for transplant recipients everywhere
In a joint statement the Minister for Sport, Richard Colbeck, and Minister for Regional Health, Mark Coulton, said securing the games would significantly boost awareness and provide inspiration for transplant recipients everywhere.
“This will be a spectacular showcase of what can be achieved from transplant athletes who have had either an organ or bone marrow transplant,” Colbeck said.
“The Games are the world’s largest awareness event promoting the importance of organ and tissue donation and just how high transplant recipients can aim in their recovery.”
Same year as Aussie hosts Women’s World Cup
He added that the announcement marked another major sporting event in the same year that Australia will also host the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
“Australia has already proven itself as an enviable host of global sporting events and securing the World Transplant Games serves to reinforce that reputation,” Colbeck said.
It will be the third time Australia has hosted the biennial event. Previous World Transplant Games were held in Sydney in 1997 and the Gold Coast in 2009.
Country has history of transplant competition
It will also be a triumphant return for the Games after the Covid-19 pandemic resulted in the cancellation of the 2020 event in Texas.
Previously Australia has fielded teams in 20 of the 21 games, with competition in core sports including athletics, 3-on-3 basketball, road racing, cycling, darts, badminton, table tennis, volleyball, petanque, tennis, squash, tenpin bowling, and sprint triathlon.
Lawn bowls, beach volleyball and football are also under consideration.
Those with transplants can again live full lives
World Transplant Games Federation and Transplant Australia CEO, Chris Thomas, said the event is living proof that donation can lead to those with chronic organ failure living long and healthy lives.
“After the challenges of 2020 the world’s transplant population will be looking for a host city that’s modern, with excellent sporting facilities and first class health care services,” Thomas said. “Perth will be a beautiful destination.
“Australia’s reputation across the world with how we handled the coronavirus pandemic gives people confidence they will be able to travel here safely to participate in this inspirational celebration.”