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16 March 2022 | in Other Events

Riga, Latvia Getting Ready to Host the SELL Student Games

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The SELL Student Games are set to return after cancellation in 2021 when they take place in Riga, Latvia 20-22 May 2022. This will be the 37th edition of the games that were first held in Tartu, Estonia in 1923.

 

The name ‘SELL’ for this annual event comes from the first letters of the four host countries which rotate hosting duties - Finland (Suomi), Estonia (Eesti), Latvia (Latvija), Lithuania (Lietuva). The SELL Student Games is under the patronage of FISU and the European University Sports Association (EUSA) and plays an important role in university sport by providing athletes opportunity for competition and in developing collaboration between countries. These four countries rotate turns as hosts but students from around the world are invited to participate.

 

This 37th edition will see the following 15 sports take place as universities are invited for three days of sport, fun, and friendship.  IMG 8293

  • Basketball

  • 3x3 basketball

  • Volleyball

  • Beach volleyball

  • 7x7 football

  • Floorball

  • Swimming

  • Table tennis

  • Judo

  • Powerlifting

  • Athletics

  • Orienteering

  • Badminton

  • Rugby

  • Chess

 

This will be the seventh time Riga has hosted the SELL Games, and additionally two other times when the city hosted the SELL Winter Games that were held prior to World War II. The most recent edition, held in Kaunas, Lithuania in 2019, welcomed 1,300 students from seven countries.

 

Two members of FISU’s staff have had direct experience with the SELL Student Games, with FISU Director General Paulo Ferreira one that took part. “I participated at the SELL Games in 2005 in Riga, Latvia which was, for us at that time, really amazing and something very exciting and even adventurous. I was in charge of a group of eight athletes who were competing in Track & Field and Swimming. We were the only “foreign” delegation and certainly turned heads when we showed up – the norm being universities from Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.”, Ferreira said. He added, “In addition to this, I felt the importance of these Games related to their history and longevity, but also to creating the opportunity to allow sportsmen and women to come together and enjoy what they do best.”

 

18623266 1888932274466423 1934554502613451321 oTarmo Jaakson, currently FISU’s Development & NUSF (National University Sports Federation) Relations Manager, previously worked on the organising committee with the SELL Student Games. He speaks fondly of his experience. “SELL games are one of the world's oldest regional university sports games (started in 1923) and an excellent example of cooperation between different countries and towards the development of university sports. One of the main principles of the Games is to be open to all students with the format of the event combining top sports and joyful student activity at the same time. As an organiser, it was always interesting to engage with so many different universities, countries – even from other regions and continents – always looking to have memorable experiences. It is and always has been an important political event too for all participating countries, and to focus on benchmarking top examples while showing how it is possible to build the profile of the NUSF. Accompanying this, is tradition as an underlining pillar.”

 

General registration is currently open and will remain so until 31 March, with information on the process available at www.sellgames2022.com/registration. Quantitative registration will then be accepted until the 10 April, and the end of individual registration will be 29 April. The registration fee includes entrance to all competitions, cultural activities, and ceremonies, as well as catering, while discounts from sponsors will be provided for housing expenses.

 

In what promises to be a very exciting and busy year on the university sport calendar with FISU World University Championships, University World Cups and the Chengdu 2021 FISU Games taking place, the SELL Student Games will provide another great opportunity for athletes to come together for connection and competition.

 

WRITTEN BY DOUG MCLEAN