Baku, June 9 AZERTAC
Ireland`s sportsnewsireland.com portal has placed an article on its website “European Games Baku 2015 Flame arrived on Sunday – Opening ceremony 12th June”
The article says: “The Baku 2015 Flame made a dramatic entrance to Baku on Sunday afternoon, beginning five days of events ahead of the European Games Opening Ceremony on Friday 12 June.
Arriving by boat at the Sutko Pier, the Flame embarked on a 16km relay around the city, led by President Ilham Aliyev during the first leg. First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva also took her turn carrying the first European Games Torch.
Other torchbearers included mugham singer Arif Babayev, and 2014 Youth Olympics Wrestling gold medallist Igbal Hajizade, who was followed by a parade of Azerbaijan’s famous Karabakh horses. The Flame was carried past Flag Square and Crystal Hall, with a giant model horse accompanying the final torchbearer who took it into the Maiden Tower, where it will stay overnight during its time in Baku.
Mr Azad Rahimov, Azerbaijan’s Minister of Youth and Sport and Chief Executive Officer of Baku 2015, said: “The Journey of the Flame has fuelled the imagination of the Azerbaijani public over the past six weeks, and it was wonderful to see Baku take part in the celebrations Sunday evening with the same enthusiasm as people across the country.”
Simon Clegg is Baku 2015 Chief Operating Officer:
“Delivering the first European Games has been a massive undertaking for BEGOC and our partners in the Azerbaijani government, involving preparations on a city-wide basis, but we have always kept a strong focus on the athletes’ experience.
Sport tests are events designed to ensure the readiness of Baku 2015 from a sport competition perspective, while test events are stand-alone competitions in their own right, with a broader range of functional areas involved.
Mr Pierce O’Callaghan, Baku 2015 Director of Sport, explained: “The series of sport tests has confirmed our readiness to host the European Games, ensuring that everything is in place for the athletes to shine across all 20 Baku 2015 sports.
The Irish boxing team was the first to arrive last week for a pre-games training camp though many other teams will only arrive two or three days before the Opening ceremony.