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  • Solutions Found to World Games' Biggest Problems; Colombian President Visits


    (ATR) Organizers found a solution to misspelled medals at the World Games and a gymnastics venue deemed dangerously hot.

    Oops! The medals for the Word—World Games. (Getty Images)
    It was first reported that the World Games medals were inscribed as “Word Games” medals, not “World Games.”

    Hermann Kewitz,a spokesperson for the International World Games Association said the misspelling was “not such a big deal” and that the medals will be replaced.

    A statement from the organizers simply said a “mistake” was made when the medals were being forged.

    “There was a mistake against the will and intentions of the organization, that deeply regrets this circumstance and presents its apologies to all the competitors honored.” The organizing committee said.

    “This mistake was completely involuntary and it does not affect the merit of the medal or the victory in any way.”

    Kewitz also added that some of the medal-winning salsa dancers refused to accept an exchange of medals “there are so many tears and sweat” that went into winning the medal.

    Gymnastics Competition Takes Place

    After a warning from the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) of “unacceptable” conditions at the venue, gymnastics took place with only one event having to be cancelled.

    Before the start of competition, FIG said the venue, El Pueblo Colliseum was too hot for competitions. Regulations stipulate that arena temperatures must be below 24 degrees Celsius, but temperatures were as high as 30 Celsius.
    Gymnastics at the World Games. (Getty Images)

    Portable air conditioners were installed throughout the venue focusing on the competition areas and FIG allowed competition to take place.

    There were also complaints about strong draughts which organizers solved by installing plastic elements to stop gusts from the air conditioners.

    Games a Success

    Despite the apparent false starts, Kewitz, and athletes, both rate the Games highly.

    “The Games seems to be huge success,” Kewitz said, “amazing, outstanding and much more.”

    Most of the competitions are sold out. The people of Cali love the World Games and their hospitality makes it so special.

    One particular success was the salsa dancing event. Cali is the birthplace of salsa and the gold medal was won by a Colombian duo, Adriana Ávila and Jefferson Benjumea.

    A capacity crowd of 16,000 turned out to watch the event.

    “I was there when the pair performed for the gold medal,” Kewitz said. “You cannot imagine how the people cheered and celebrated that moment.”

    U.S. dancer Anthony Kumo Tineo was breathless on Facebook when leaving Cali, saying he was treated like a king.

    “I find it difficult to put into words what I will remember for the rest if my life as up to date the most memorable experience of my life,” he posted. “I've never felt so welcome, loved and accepted by locals .. we lived as kings and queens.”

    President Santos Visits

    Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos visited the World Games on Thursday.

    He took time to address the media saying hosting the Games is “a great honor for Cali and Colombia.

    “Hosting such an important event would make any city proud,” he added.

    Thursday Medal Tally

    At the time of writing on August 1, Italy and Russia were neck-and-neck for top spot in the medal tally.

    Italy has 45 medals and Russia has 41. France is third with 31.

    Hosts Colombia have the sixth spot with 18 medals.

    Competition runs until Aug. 4.

    Written by Ed Hula III.

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