Athletics: Africa to break new ground with World Championships bid
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[August 24, 2017]
(Reuters) - One of six African
nations will bid to host the 2025 World Athletics Championships as
the continent hopes to stage the global meet for a first time, the
Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) president Hamad Kalkaba
Malboum has said.
African countries have previously held several major sporting events
with South Africa hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup and Morocco
staging an IAAF Diamond League event this year. Three nations also
co-hosted the 2003 Cricket World Cup.
Malboum believes that the continent's previous hosting record
indicated that the biennial championships could also be held
successfully in Africa.
"We are talking with Kenya, South Africa, Nigeria, Algeria, Egypt,
Morocco -- those countries have the facilities," Malboum told the
BBC on Wednesday.
"I have very positive sounds from some of them.
"People said that Africa could not host the World Cup in football,
but we did it very successfully."
Malboum added that the governing body IAAF's head Sebastian Coe was
also in favor of a bid from within the continent.
"President Coe is supporting the fact that Africa could host the
World Championships," the 66-year-old added.
[to top of second column]
Hamad Kalkaba Malboum, President of the Confederation of African
Athletics (CAA), attends a press conference as part of the
International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) council
meeting in Monaco, February 6, 2017. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard
The Cameroonian said that African countries had now
come to understand the importance of the event after showing little
interest in hosting the championships in the past.
"I think many now realize that (staging the championships) could put
the nation on the world map in terms of publicity and promote
tourism, so there is a benefit from hosting the event. This was not
the case in the past," Malboum said.
Qatar and the U.S. will host the 2019 and 2021 championships
respectively, with the decision on the hosts for the 2025 edition
set to be announced in 2020.
(Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru)
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