The 16th FINA World Masters Championships are in full swing now. The majority of the athletes competing at these Championships live in the Athletes’ Village. As of today about 896 athletes checked in. Although some athletes who have completed their competitions have checked out and are already on their way home. Currently 804 athletes are living in the Athletes’ Village.
All the athletes are doing their best at the competitions whereas at the Athletes’ Village the team spirit and the atmosphere of friendliness easily can be spotted. Australian athletes for instance going for a walk with the athletes from Mexico chatting and sharing their impressions. Most of them have already known each other from the previous championships and this time host city represents not only a consecutive tournament center but also old friends' gathering place.
“The Athletes’ Village has a wide experience accommodating the athletes although The Masters tournament’s athletes seem to be something extremely new in the Athletes’ Village history. They are all the people of different age group, from the youth till the elderly years, some of them have arrived with their families, children, some of them with even their grandchildren which is very unusual and exciting at the same time. Since there is no strict schedule of trainings or serious regulations for the athletes the atmosphere in the Athletes' Village seems to be more festive rather than competitive, although right on the premises severe battles for gold are likely to unfold,” Farid Abdulganiev, Mayor of the Athletes' Village, said.
The Masters tournament’s athletes are provided with the same services as the 16th FINA World Championships’ athletes have been. Ak Bars Bank office, post office, supermarket, beauty salon, clothing repair shop, gift shop, outdoor sports grounds (basketball, volleyball and indoor football) are at the athletes’ disposal. They obviously seem to like it. For example, the gift shop’s sale assistants say that every single day the foreigners buy a lot of post cards, magnets and mostly national souvenirs such as Matreshka, Russian dolls. As for the post office the athletes quite often send home letters, post cards and even parcels full of gifts. The lounge zone is the most popular place among the athletes, there they can get massaged. Since the Athletes’ Village is enormous enough special electric cars are served.
The athletes of the Masters tournament like living in the Athletes’ Village very much. They are eager to share their impressions.
“I like living in the Athletes’ Village very much! The open space, fresh air, the healthy lifestyle, everything is interconnected! During the day I have trainings but as for the evenings we like wandering these pretty alleys, enjoying this flowery view!” David Mok, Chinese swimmer, said.
“Everything is pretty great here at the Athletes’ Village. I am really impressed with the way everything is so clean here, everyone is very friendly, especially the volunteers who speak quite good English. In our free time we play chess, spend time in the Lounge zone, do outdoor sport activities. Everything is organized up to the highest level. Thankfully we had no problems with getting in here,” Eric Blevins, US diver, said.
“To live side by side with such huge number of people is quite exciting for me. I really enjoy being here,” said Ibone De Belausteguigoitia, 85-year-old diver from the USA.
“We try to swim and train most of the time, but sometimes we visit the downtown, go for a walk, attend Tatar cuisine restaurants, we like it here. The best thing is that we easily can get back,” Australian swimmer David Salter admitted.
The life of every single athlete of the Masters tournament is full of vivid and colourful events which produces nothing but positively charged energy exchange at the competitions!
Press Office of Organising Committee for 16th FINA World Championships