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In historic move, para sports to feature in 2025 Winter and Summer World University Games in Torino and Rhine-Ruhr

LAUSANNE, November 30, 2023 – 3×3 wheelchair basketball is set to become the first para sport to feature in the International University Sports Federation (FISU) World University Games Summer after it has been included in the programme of the Rhine-Ruhr 2025 edition. Eight men’s and eight women’s teams will compete for the medals in the sport at the Arena-Sportpark in Düsseldorf.

Rhine-Ruhr 2025 organisers made this announcement on November 27, two weeks after the organisers of the Torino 2025 FISU Winter Games confirmed their decision to stage para-snow sports competitions.

A WHOLE NEW STAGE The historic move is said to have been well received by athletes. “It’s great that wheelchair basketball will have a whole new stage at the FISU World University Games Summer and will certainly attract many more spectators. This spectacular sport is sure to quickly win them over. At the same time, it will certainly be good for our sport that young talents can prove themselves here once again and gain important experience in international competition,” says Mareike Miller, German wheelchair basketball player.

A POSITIVE STEP Jing Zhao, Director of the FISU Summer Games, described the inclusion of 3×3 wheelchair basketball in Rhine-Ruhr 2025 as “a positive step toward promoting inclusivity and diversity in international university sports.”

She added: “In Rhine-Ruhr, we will be integrating 3×3 wheelchair basketball into existing basketball programme, which allows for shared resources, facilities, and expertise, promoting a seamless collaboration.”

The Rhine-Ruhr FISU Games are scheduled to take place from July 16 to 27 in 2025 across the cities of Bochum, Duisburg, Düsseldorf, Essen and Mühlheim.

A FIRST Before then, the winter edition of FISU’s flagship event will take place from 13 to 23 January 2025 in the Piedmont capital, Torino. And paralympic student-athletes are set to participate for the first time in the history of the Games.

 “For the first time paralympic athletes will be able to compete in snow sports disciplines together with able-bodied athletes. After the invention of the Universiade in 1959, this is another innovation by Turin, this time in the name of social sustainability,” said Alessandro Ciro Sciretti, President of the Torino 2025 Organising Committee.

CONCRETE ACTIONS Staging para-snow sports competitions at the FISU Games has been in the plan of Torino 2025 since the candidature phase, underlining the commitment of the Federation of Italian University Sport (FederCUSI) to promote concrete actions of social inclusion, through the practice of sports activities.

“This is the result of two years of work with the Organising Committee and the FIS and a historic day for the entire university sports movement. We hope to expand the number of disciplines and participants in future editions,” said Milan Augustin, FISU Winter Games Director.

Paralympic champion Alessandro Daldoss, a visually impaired skier, said: “This evokes great memories because I was only the forerunner with my guide at the 2013 Trentino Universiade, while now the disabled athletes will actually be able to compete on the same tracks as their able-bodied colleagues,” he said.

Source: AIPS Media

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