Sambo contest in Ballymena

Shaun Oneill


Shaun Oneill


THE International Sambo Federation President’s Cup tournament is coming back to Ballymena in September!

Over 100 competitors from up to 12 different countries will converge at the Seven Towers Leisure Centre where the action will take place.

Through participants and fans and followers the local economy could benefit to the region of £80,000!

The Sambo President’s Cup event will take place on Saturday, September 21.

North Antrim MP, Ian Paisley, has welcomed the return of the tournament to Ballymena.

He recalled the success of last year’s event in the town, describing it as a “multi-national affair.”

“The organisers are the Commonwealth Sambo Association together with the International Sambo Federation (FIAS) and they were so impressed that when I invited them to return this year, they had no hesitation in accepting,” Mr. Paisley told Guardian Sport.

“Sambo has a small Northern Ireland support base and I hope that by making this return visit, the martial arts sport will gain many more enthusiastic supporters and competitors.”

The MP said the event will once again be good for business in Ballymena and neighbouring areas.

“More than 80 bedrooms are booked, flights and transport arranged, venue confirmed and support services such as catering put in place,” and Mr. Paisley.

“It is estimated that the economic benefit stemming from Sambo will be in the region of £80,000. I’m indebted to Mid and East Antrim Borough Council for the support it gave last year and to the staff at the Leisure Centre who went the extra mile to make it the success that it was.”

Mr. Paisley pointed out there is free entry to the tournament.

Michael Wynne-Parker, President, Commonwealth Sambo Association, said last year's event was a great success.

“Our athletes were impressed by the welcome they received,” he said. “I'm delighted that FIAS has decided to make a return to Ballymena and look forward to this year's tournament in September,” he concluded.

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