AIMS GAMES two days away

By Staff reporter

Two days out from the beginning of the NZCT AIMS GAMES tournament, another school has signed up to take part, making it one of New Zealand's largest sporting events.

Tournament director Vicki Semple said the number of young athletes, coaches, managers and supports involved this year has exploded this year, thanks to the addition of Rugby League and the involvement of two Australian schools.

This year, more than 6,000 athletes from 166 schools are set to compete in the NZCT AIMS GAMES tournament.

This has grown from 4,600 athletes from 121 schools last year.

To celebrate the record number of participants this year, TV One Breakfast Show presenter Sam Wallace will film a segment for the show from Main Mount Beach from 7am on Monday. At the beach, Mr Wallace will complete a variety of challenges.

The Erin Simpson Show, an afternoon television show for young people, will broadcast from the games on Wednesday, and a kids news website delivered by kids,, will report on the games online.

During the tournament week, a team of 20 young reporters will visit sports, write articles and take photos of events. Teacher-in-charge Shem Banbury said the aim was to visit each sport and provide a number of articles each day to post to the website.

A spokesperson from one of the Australian schools set to take part in AIMS GAMES said the occasion would be the first time some of their students had travelled overseas.

James Henderson of The Knox School in Melbourne said the school was always looking for unique sporting opportunities for their Year 7 students and AIMS GAMES fit the bill.

"The NZCT AIMS Games programme has been professionally put together and as a school we are so impressed with the level of organisation, especially considering the size of the tournament,'' he said.

"Students are looking forward to a level of unknown competition and I am sure that the recent Olympic Games have fuelled a friendly rivalry.''

The NZCT AIMS GAMES Tournament kicks off on Sunday with the Cross Country event at Welcome Bay's Waipuna Park followed by the Opening Ceremony, which will be held at the TECT Arena in Mt Maunganui.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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