For the first time in the 25-year of independence of Georgia, an unprecedented number of Georgian athletes have left to take part in the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics.
Unprecedented number of Georgian athletes leaves for Brazil Olympic Games
By Mariam Chanishvili
Monday, July 25
A total of 39 Georgian athletes will compete in 13 sports during the competition.
Georgian athletes were seen off to Rio by Georgia’s top officials on July 22.
The farewell ceremony was attended by the President of Georgia, Giorgi Margvelashvili, Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, the Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs, the President of the National Olympic Committee, Tbilisi's Mayor, the Ambassador of Brazil and representatives from the sporting community.
Margvelashvili delivered a speech during the ceremony and wished the athletes success and victory.
“I am sure that the whole world will listen to the national anthem of Georgia to celebrate your victory. I want to wish you courage, success and the victory for our country,” stated Margvelashvili.
The PM thanked the athletes for representing Georgia and congratulated Brazil for achieving its success in being selected to host the Summer Olympic Games.
“We really need victory and I am sure, together, we will achieve this victory,” the PM stressed.
At the end of the ceremony, the President of the National Weightlifting Federation, Kakhi Kakhiashvili handed the medals to the Prime Minister of Georgia in memory of the Weightlifting World Cup, held in Tbilisi.
The Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, will last from August 5-21 2016. The Rio 2016 opening ceremony will be at the Maracanã Stadium on August 5.
A record number of countries are participating in a record number of sports. More than 10,500 athletes from 206 National Olympic Committees (NOCs), including first time entrants Kosovo and South Sudan, are scheduled to take part.
With 306 sets of medals, the games will feature 28 Olympic sports — including rugby sevens and golf, which were added by the International Olympic Committee in 2009.
These sporting events will take place at 33 venues in the host city and at five venues in the cities of San Paulo(Brazil's largest city), Belo Horizonte, Salvador, Brasília (Brazil's capital), and Manaus.
It is worth mentioning that among the Georgian participants of the Olimpic Games are mother Nino Salukvadze and her 18-year-old son Tsotne Machavariani, both qualified for the Games. This is unprecedented occasion.