Around 130 of this year’s selected sports stars received their kits during a launch event at Northwood House in Cowes this evening (Tuesday).
Among those in attendance was Olympic gold medallist Shirley Robertson OBE, appearing on behalf of Lord Lieutenant of the Isle of Wight Susie Sheldon. She wished the squad luck ahead of the tournament.
Main sponsors ICRTouch, which paid for this year’s strip, were also at the event to give the squad a final send-off.
At the meeting, Chair of the Isle of Wight Island Games Association Martin Goodall announced that Table Tennis player Daniel Burns would bare the flag at the tournament.
He appeared in Gibraltar the last time time it was hosted there. Speaking exclusively to Isle of Wight Radio he said:
“I’m very fortunate that the reason I’ve been chosen is because I first attended the Gibraltar 1995 games, however many years ago that was!
“So I was 15 years old and I’m nearly 40 now so for me it’s kind of like a full circle and I’m delighted to be going back.”
During each games, a traditional water ceremony is held – the equivalent to the Olympic flame – where each island brings its own water to mix together.
This year, water will be taken from Carisbrooke Castle’s well and presented by father and daughter Rob and Amelie Haworth.
The duo will compete in the mixed doubles Squash event. Rob said:
“I take Amelie to a lot of tournament’s around Europe and England and that’s taking Amelie – so for me to compete with my daughter is something very very special and I’m very proud.”
13-year-old Amelie added:
“It’s a big thing for both of us and it’ll be good that we get to do the doubles tournament together. It’s nothing like we’ve ever done before.”
The Island Games runs from 6th to 12th July.
Team Isle of Wight has been boosted by a £740 donation from Newport Business Association (NBA).
The team will travel to Gibraltar in July for the 2019 Island Games and the cash from NBA will help towards their travel and accommodation costs.
Members of the organisation gave donations which the association match funded.
Jo Randall, of Newport’s Love Running shop, said: “Newport Business Association is proud to support the 2019 Island Games, and wishes every member of Team Isle of Wight a most enjoyable, exhilarating and successful event.”From left to right, Kevin Winchcombe, Simon Randall (Love Running), Julie Jones-Evans (Dragonfly), John McLaughlin (Take 2), Jo Randall (Love Running), Steve Double (IW Venue Campaign) and Martin Goodall.
The donation followed a meeting between business association members and the Isle of Wight’s Island Games chairman, Martin Goodall, last summer.
Martin said: “We are really grateful to Newport Business Association for the donation.
“Competing in the Island Games is the pinnacle for many of our athletes - it’s like a mini Olympics and a very special event to be involved in.
“We would hate for anyone who has been selected on merit to miss out over money, so any financial support we receive makes a huge difference.”
TEAM Isle of Wight’s biggest Island Games athletics squad since 2011 has been kitted out for this year’s event, thanks to a new sponsor.
The squad will head to Gibraltar in July sporting a new bespoke kit, courtesy of Churcher’s Solicitors, Ryde.
Athletics manager Nick Groocock said: “We’re taking experienced athletes who will be hoping to bring back a haul of medals, as well as some young but talented athletes who we have high hopes for the future.
“As ever, the cost of competing at the Games is always challenging so the sponsorship from Churcher’s has helped enormously."
Churcher’s managing partner Ian Robinson added: “We are proud to support the athletics team in the upcoming Island Games.
“We wish them the best of luck in competing and look forward to following their progress.”
The 2019 Island Games runs between 6 and 12 July.