Women’s sport crux of Birmingham 2022


Birmingham 2022 update June 2021 Image: Birmingham 2022

The full event schedule for Birmingham 2022 (UK) has been released, allowing sports fans to see the detail of exactly which events will be held in each of the 286 sessions that will feature at next summer’s Games.

‘Birmingham 2022’ stated that women’s cricket T20, basketball 3×3, wheelchair basketball 3×3 and mixed synchronized diving will all debut in Birmingham, with the schedule set to include two ‘Super Sundays’ for spectators to look forward to, with the second set to be the ultimate showcase of women’s sport.

The 2022 Commonwealth Games, officially known as the XXII Commonwealth Games and commonly known as Birmingham 2022, is an international multisport event for members of the Commonwealth that is scheduled to be held in Birmingham, England (UK). It is scheduled to be held from July 28th, 2022 to August 8th, 2022.

With limited opportunities to attend live sports events in recent months due to the COVID-19 seesaw the world over, a huge amount of interest in tickets for the Games is expected, especially as the sports program is the biggest in Commonwealth history.

The event schedule was launched with the help of Team England hopefuls who visited the 12,700-capacity Alexander Stadium in Birmingham, England (UK) – an important Games venue currently undergoing a £72 million refurbishment which is on budget and on schedule to be completed in Spring 2022.

Matt Kidson, Director of Sport for Birmingham 2022, exulted, “With more detail for our sports program now revealed, the Games is really taking shape and it’s time for people to start planning which sessions they want to attend next summer, as our tickets will go on sale very soon. With 19 different sports and eight para sports, we have such a rich and varied program and there will be medal moments on every single day of the competition.”

Added Kidson, “We also have a really interesting mix of venues, with established facilities like the 15,685-capacity National Exhibition Centre (NEC) adjacent to the Birmingham Airport and the 15,800-capacity Arena Birmingham, beautiful parks like St Nicholas Park and West Park and exciting redevelopments like the Alexander Stadium, where the progress in the last 12 months has been phenomenal.”

Nigel Huddleston MP, Minister for Sport and Tourism, who visited Birmingham to help launch the search for 13,000 volunteers for the Games, stated, “Birmingham 2022 is fast approaching and it’s exciting that fans can now start planning which sporting events they want to see next year. With children’s ticket prices starting at £8, I hope that families from across the West Midlands will take up this once in a generation opportunities to see the best athletes in the world compete on their doorstep.”

Commonwealth Games Federation President, Dame Louise Martin, observed, “With Birmingham 2022 fully on track to stage a fantastic, fully inclusive event, now is the time to plan your visit to the Commonwealth Games. The publication of the full event schedule reveals 11 exciting days of competition that will see 4,500 elite athletes compete across 19 sports. We are particularly proud to be offering affordable ticket prices, so please make sure you don’t miss out and that you visit the Birmingham 2022 website to create your ticketing account right now.”

As well as providing new information about the schedule and revealing details about tickets, there has also been attention on the Alexander Stadium in the Perry Barr area of Birmingham.

The stadium, which will stage the opening and closing ceremonies for the Games, as well as the athletics events, is being completely overhauled ahead of Birmingham 2022 and a huge amount of progress has been made on the project.

The roof liner sheets on the new stand have been finished, pre-cast terracing (the concrete support for seating) and the metal decked concrete floors for the new West Stand have been completed, and the feature steps for the northern plaza have recently been installed, so the stadium is really starting to take shape.

The project is being overseen by the Birmingham City Council – its Leader, Councilor Ian Ward, stated, “The summer of 2022 is set for a spectacular Commonwealth Games, with 11 days of world-class sport in our City and wider region. The redeveloped Alexander Stadium will be at the heart of the Games, as the venue will not only host the athletics but the opening and closing ceremonies. The Alexander Stadium redevelopment is progressing at a lightning speed, with the roof of the new West Stand now complete. Once finished, the Alexander Stadium will be truly befitting for the world’s best track and field athletes and as a bold centerpiece of leisure, health and well-being activity in a regenerated Perry Barr.”

Sandwell Aquatics Centre

A significant milestone has been reached at the Sandwell Aquatics Centre, which is currently under construction in Smethwick, as the tiling of the main competition pool, which will be used for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, has now begun.

‘Birmingham 2022’ further stated that Nigel Huddleston, MP, Minister for Sport and Tourism, and Ian Reid, Chief Executive of Birmingham 2022, made their first visit to the site since February last year, to inspect the impressive progress and to help work experience students from Sandwell College, and representatives from Sandwell Council, lay the first tiles.

Remarked Huddleston, “Fantastic progress has been made on the Sandwell Aquatics Centre since I was last here in February 2020. Not only will this amazing facility help put Sandwell on the map during Birmingham 2022, it will also become an outstanding new leisure center for the community. It is great examples of how we are leveling up across the country, by investing money in new world-class facilities that leave a lasting legacy for local people.”

The Sandwell Aquatics Centre will host the swimming and para swimming competition at the Commonwealth Games from July 29th to August 3rd and the diving competition from August 4th to August 8th, meaning that the Centre will be in use for all 11 days of the sporting showcase.

Reid put in, “It has been great to get back on site and the Sandwell Aquatics Centre is looking incredible. There has been so much progress in the last 12 months and the credit for that must go to Sandwell Council and its construction partner. You can now really get a sense of how the only new build venue for our event, the Sandwell Aquatics Centre, will look during the Games. This a key competition site for Birmingham 2022, as more medals will be decided here than at any other Games venue.”

Students from Sandwell College are gaining work experience on the site and 19-year-old Kye Roseblade, who lives just a few miles from the aquatics centre and is studying for his level two Wall and Floor Tile Diploma, will be helping to lay the tiles in the pools.

Said Roseblade, “It’s really exciting to work on the aquatics center for the Commonwealth Games. We’ve got four weeks work experience laying tiles in the center and I’m really enjoying working on such a big project.”

The 10m dive tower at the center was completed earlier in the year and recent work has included the completion of the building façades. The roof is nearing completion and curtain walling and glazing is well advanced. Internally, high-level works within the pool hall have been ongoing, including pool hall lighting, fire alarm cabling and ventilation and heating duct work.

As well as being a key facility for the Commonwealth Games, the Sandwell Aquatics Centre will also be one of the greatest legacies of Birmingham 2022, with the local community benefiting from having a brand-new, world-class facility on their doorstep.

The project is being overseen by Sandwell Council and its Leader, Councilor Rajbir Singh, put in, “It was amazing seeing the new Sandwell Aquatics Centre and looking at the scale of the work being undertaken. The venue, which is located in Smethwick, is impressive and will not only serve as a host venue for the Games but will leave a lasting legacy for local residents and the wider region for generations to come. I am looking forward to seeing the venue completed and hosting the swimming and diving events for the Games in Smethwick.”

The total cost of the center, which is on schedule and on budget, is £73 million. Sandwell Council is contributing £27 million with £38.5 million coming from the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games budget. A further £7.6 million is funded by other external partners Sport England, Black Country LEP, Sandwell Leisure Trust (SLT), and the University of Wolverhampton.

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