Latest update: 08/06/2009 18:18 +0300

CYPRUS 2009: One Hundred Days to Games

NICOSIA, 20 February 2009 - "We want to send a message of self-confidence to all Cypriots and a message to all our friends from abroad that despite the adverse conditions that have been afflicting our country for decades, we continue to live, act, create and turn the impossible into the possible," said Ouranios Ioannides, president of the Executive Committee of the XIII Games of the Small States of Europe CYPRUS 2009 at a Press Conference here today. The Press Conference was held on occasion of the minus 100-day mark in the countdown to the Games, which will be held 1-6 June in Nicosia and Limassol.

"We are realists, so we demand the impossible," continued Mr Ioannides. "But because we talk of a sporting event, I would like the spotlights now to focus on the stars--the athletes." Speaking on the expectations of all Cypriots, Mr Ioannides evaluated the home team as a favourite to lead the medals standings at the XIII GSSE, as had been the case when Cyprus last hosted the Games, in 1989.

"Our first goal is to invest in victories, to forge a spiritual bond with the sporting public and to bring new young men and women to our sporting facilities, where they will be fortified against bad habits and other dismissible activities."

"Our second goal is to achieve full stadiums. Thirdly, we wish to witness great performances by all athletes. Last, but not least, is our wish to host 'honest' competition, 'clean' and in the spirit of fair play, without false records and false victories."

Mr Ioannides also made special reference to the events that will be held on the sidelines of the Games themselves. On occasion of the XIII GSSE, the Cyprus Olympic Committee will celebrate the 35 years since its foundation and 30 years since recognition by the International Olympic Committee. The International Fair Play Committee will also convene in Cyprus during the Games, this summer. And on the morning of the Opening Ceremony, on 1 June 2009, an informal meeting of the European Ministers of Sports, as well as a meeting of the Presidents of the National Olympic Committees of the Small States of Europe.

Invitations to attend the Games will be sent out to the Heads of States, heads of Governments and Foreign Ministers of all the Small States of Europe.

Other events during the XIII GSSE include the premiere of the Choir of the COC, with an Olympic and local cultural repertoire.

"We wish to promote our education, our culture and our identity to all our friends from foreign lands. Guided by the words of poet Odysseus Elytis 'if you disconnect Greece, you are left with a ship, a vine and an olive tree--which means that with these three you can rebuild her', we conclude that this absolutely also applies to Cyprus," said Mr Ioannides. "That's why our guests will see the ship as the emblem of the Games, will receive a special collectors bottle of wine, and also a perfume based on olive oil."

The Executive Committee President also expressed his appreciation for their contribution to the organisation of the Games to the governmental bodies involved:

  • The Ministry of Education and Culture and the Minister personally for their support in the cultural events of the Games and for their assistance to volunteering teachers and students.
  • The Ministry of Defence and the Minister personally for their contribution in material and personnel.
  • The Ministry of Health and the Minister personally for their assistance with ambulances, material and personnel.
  • The Ministry of Justice and Public Order and the Minister personally, as well as the Police and its Chief personally, who have undertaken the security of the Games.

"I have left for last the Cyprus Sports Organisation, since our effort is collective and the Organising Committtee of the Games includes both the Executive Council of the COC and the Board of the CSO," said Mr Ioannides.

Last, but not least, Mr Ioannides referred to the sponsors of the Games. "Without them, neither the Games themselves, nor the parallel events would take place," said Mr Ioannides, before announcing the sponsors:

  • Grand Institutional Sponsor, the bloodline of sports in Cyprus, OPAP Ltd, with a multidimensional financial and otherwise contribution.
  • Institutional Sponsors: Bank of Cyprus, Cyprus Tourism Organisation, Cyprus Telecommunications Authority, SPE Strovolos, PEAK.
  • Golden Sponsors: Coca-Cola, Gillette.
  • Silver Sponsor: Duracell.
  • Bronze Sponsors: Electricity Authority of Cyprus, Cyprus Airways.
  • Official Supporters: FA Shower Gel, ETKO Winery.


Photos for Press Use, free of rights (click on a thumbnail for higher resolution)

Press Conference at Olympic House in Nicosia on the
minus 100-days mark to the
Executive Committee President, Ouranios Ioannides, at the Press Conference on the
minus 100-days mark to the
Press Conference at Olympic House in Nicosia on the
minus 100-days mark to the
Press Conference at Olympic House in Nicosia on the
minus 100-days mark to the
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