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NatWest Island Games: Gibraltar name 12-sport list for 2019

Sport | Published:

SIX sports that took centre stage at the 2015 NatWest Island Games in Jersey have been, provisionally, omitted by 2019 hosts Gibraltar.

Following Menorca's decision to withdraw from holding the biennial event earlier this year, Gibraltar and the Isle of Man expressed interest in holding the Games in four years' time, but it was confirmed last night that International Island Games Association chairman Jorgen Pettersson's committee 'intend to invite Gibraltar to sign the master contract'.

In: Athletics, badminton, basketball, judo, sailing, shooting (clay target and pistol), squash, table tennis, tennis, swimming, triathlon, tenpin bowling.

Out: Archery, cycling, football, golf, gymnastics*, fullbore and smallbore shooting, volleyball, windsurfing**.

* included for Gotland 2017 after missing Jersey 2015

** excluded for both 2017 and 2019

Archery, cycling, football, golf and volleyball – which will all feature at Gotland 2017 – have been dropped by those behind Gibraltar's 12-sport bid, perhaps due to the size of the principality (just 2.5 square miles), while windsurfers may have to go at least six years without Games action after apparently being snubbed for both 2017 and 2019.

Fullbore and smallbore shooting have, according to the bid document, also been excluded by Gibraltar Island Games Association chief Linda Alvarez and Co, although clay target and pistol shooting are safe. And, in athletics, just three field events – high jump, long jump and shot putt – have been included.

Gymnastics, which returns in two years' time in Gotland, will again be in 'exile' in Gibraltar.

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However, there is good news for three sports left in the dark this summer, with squash, judo and tenpin bowling all set to make a return. Tenpin bowling's only previous appearance was in Gotland in 1999, while squash and judo won't have featured for six and ten years respectively by the time the 2019 Games are held.

Alvarez was unable to comment on the bid as the GIGA were due to further discuss the matter today, but she did note that, as with all Games, there is the capacity for 14 sports.

Read the reaction from the winners and losers in today's JEP.

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