New dates for the Invictus Games in The Hague have been finalised, with the 2020 games cleverly rebranded Invictus Games 202One.
FILE PHOTO: Aussie team member Beau King in action at the Sydney 2018 Invictus Games. Photo by Brian Hartigan.
Postponed by COVID-19, the 2020 Games are now scheduled for 29 May to 5 June 2021.
Chairman of the Invictus Games The Hague 202One Mart de Kruif said the coronavirus influenced every public mass event.
“We will organise the Invictus Games safely, for the competitors, their loved ones and spectators, and we will work within all Covid-19 measures,” Mr de Kruif said.
“We still strive to deliver a safe, surprising and impactful Games.”
Dutch Invictus Games team member Benito Versluijs said it was a big disappointment that the Invictus Games could not take place this year, but also understandable in the current situation.
“I look forward to competing in the Games in 2021,” Mr Versluijs said.
“All the hard work and the efforts of the organisation and the Dutch delegation are still valuable and a good basis to work on an even more beautiful event in 2021.
“Together with my teammates, family and friends, we will celebrate our invincibility and show the Invictus Spirit.
“With a date to focus on, I can set my new goals and work towards May 2021.
“Together with the team we will schedule our training moments, so we will all be prepared to show our strength to the world.”
With Belgium set to compete as an Invictus Games nation for the first time in The Hague, Belgian team member Peter Caubergh said the preparation leading up to his country’s very first games was good.
“We had training moments with the French Invictus Games team and got a clinic from the Belgian national rowing team,” Caubergh said.
“When the big tournaments like the Olympic Games started to postpone, it was clear that the Invictus Games had to be postponed as well.
“As an emergency doctor, working at the First Aid during this pandemic was mentally hard but also a very special period.
“I am now slowly starting to train again as the team trainings are scheduled for September and October.
“Although we keep in touch digitally, it will be good to see the whole group again and everyone is still excited to come over to The Hague in May 2021.”
Mr de Kruif said the Games had received heartwarming support from all partners and suppliers.
“The entire Invictus family is very grateful for the continued support of all involved in delivering the Invictus Games The Hague 202One.
“Sponsors and partners did not have to think long about a possible restart and have extended their support by another year.
“National public broadcaster NOS has already confirmed its commitment to broadcasting the Invictus Games next year.”
Games CEO Conny Wenting said the municipality of The Hague warmly welcomed the new dates in 2021, amid a crowded agenda of other postponed events.
“The support of our founding, presenting and commercial partners gives us great confidence that we can deliver the best possible event given the COVID-19 circumstances.”