New World Tournament in Kazan — everything you wanted to know about BRICS Games

Realnoe Vremya's overview

New World Tournament in Kazan — everything you wanted to know about BRICS Games
Photo: Роман Хасаев

On June 12, the BRICS Games were officially opened in Kazan — an international multisport tournament and big sports festival, which has already been dubbed our response to the Olympics. The capital of Tatarstan is hosting about 5,000 athletes from almost a hundred countries of the world. The largest delegations are from Russia and Belarus, as well as from China, Brazil, India, Iran, and the UAE. For almost two weeks, athletes from different countries are competing in 27 sports, and at the end they celebrate victories at Sabantuy with Kazan residents. More information about the competitions can be found in the material of Realnoe Vremya.

What are BRICS Games?

The BRICS Games are international multi-sport competitions that are traditionally held between the member states of the economic group of the same name. Five countries created the Group in 2009: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (the abbreviation BRICS came out of the first letters). Today, this interstate association includes nine actively developing countries, and 20 more are candidates for membership. After the expansion, the union became known as BRICS+.

Foreign governments gather at summits that our country has hosted two times. This year, Russia hosts the BRICS summit for the third time — in October in Kazan. The sports tournament is usually organised by the state that chairs the economic group during the year. On the occasion of the Russian presidency, in 2024 the Games are held again in the capital of Tatarstan — from June 12 to 23.

On the occasion of the Russian presidency, the 2024 BRICS Games are held in Kazan from June 12 to 23. Динар Фатыхов /

In total, five BRICS Games have already been held in the world:

  • Trial Games — in 2016 in India (1 sport: football)
  • 1st Games — in 2017 in China (3 sports: basketball, volleyball, Wushu taolu)
  • 2nd Games — 2018 in South Africa (3 sports: volleyball (men/women), football (women), netball)
  • 3rd Games — in 2022 in online format (3 sports: breaking, chess, wushu)
  • 4th Games — in 2023 in South Africa (5 sports: swimming, badminton, table tennis, tennis, beach volleyball)
  • The 5th Games are held in 2024 in Kazan (27 sports: acrobatic rock and roll, badminton, boxing, belt wrestling, breaking, canoe sprint, rowing, judo, karate, equestrian sports, koresh belt wrestling, athletics, table tennis, swimming, diving, sambo, synchronised swimming, wrestling, gymnastics, tennis, weightlifting, wushu, fencing, phygital basketball, phygital football, chess, rhythmic gymnastics).

So, the tournament in Kazan is held in 27 sports, of which 18 are Olympic. Each BRICS state-participant can offer one national type of competition, for example, China — go, and South Africa — jukskei. In Russia, this kind of highlight of the Games is the national Tatar wrestling koresh, a traditional art form of the Turkic peoples. Acrobatic rock and roll or wushu are also innovations among the usual competitions. 387 sets of medals will be awarded among the athletes of the tournament.

Largest delegation is from the host country of the tournament: 635 athletes were first announced as part of the Russian national team, later their number reached 1 thousand. Максим Платонов /

How many states and athletes participate

Even by the number of disciplines, it can be understood that this year's BRICS Games promise to be the largest. On the eve of the start of the tournament, about 5,000 athletes and 1.5 thousand officials from Brazil, India, China, South Africa, Ethiopia, Iran, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Belarus, Pakistan, Venezuela, Cuba and many other states confirmed their participation — a total of 93 countries.

The largest delegation is from the host country of the tournament — 635 athletes were first announced as part of the Russian national team, closer to the start of the tournament their number reached 1 thousand, including dozens of sports stars. Belarus is the second with 200 athletes. They are followed by the states of the BRICS Plus — China, India, Brazil, Egypt, Iran, the United Arab Emirates, South Africa, and Ethiopia. Large delegations come from friendly countries — Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Azerbaijan. The South Ossetia national team stands out in the overall composition.

The main goal of the tournament is to strengthen sports ties between the member countries of the Union and friendly states on the basis of non-discrimination, the principle of equality and equal admission to competitions.

Main goal of the tournament is to strengthen sports ties between the member states of the Union and friendly states on the basis of non-discrimination and the principle of equality. взято с сайта

When competitions take place

Kazan is no stranger to taking the exam for holding such major tournaments, 17 sports facilities have been prepared for competitions in the city (another one in Moscow hosts acrobatic rock and roll competitions on its basis). The games can be watched at the Ak Bars Arena and Tsentralny stadiums, Tatneft Arena, Aquatics Palace, Badminton Centre, and other sports complexes.

According to the programme of the Games, the competitions start on Thursday and finish on Monday with the final round of acrobatic rock and roll. On the start day, June 13, badminton, rowing, table tennis and tennis competitions are held, as well as finals in sambo, synchronised swimming, gymnastics, weightlifting, and wushu. On June 14, the winners of the tournament are determined among rowers, karate, sambo wrestlers, and other athletes.

  • June 13-14 — sambo
  • June 13-15 — synchronised swimming
  • June 13-15 — artistic gymnastics
  • June 13-15 — weightlifting
  • June 13-16 — badminton
  • June 13-16 — rowing
  • June 13-16 — table tennis
  • June 13-16 — wushu
  • June 13-19 — tennis
  • June 14-15 — karate
  • June 15-16 — athletics
  • June 15-18 — phygital basketball
  • June 16-18 — diving
  • June 17-20 — wrestling
  • June 18-19 — equestrian sports
  • June 18-21 — chess
  • June 19-21 — swimming
  • June 19-22 — boxing
  • June 19-22 — fencing
  • June 19-22 — kayaking and canoeing
  • June 20-22 — phygital football
  • June 20-22 — rhythmic gymnastics
  • June 21 — koresh
  • June 21-22 — judo
  • June 22 — belt wrestling
  • June 22-23 — breaking
  • June 24 — acrobatic rock and roll

A more detailed competition schedule can be found on the BRICS Games website.

Opening and closing ceremonies

The BRICS Games were officially opened with a theatrical performance on Russia Day, June 12 at 7 pm, at the concert hall named after Ilgam Shakirov at the Kazan Expo IEC. But tickets for this event were not on sale — due to the small capacity of the hall, only athletes and official guests had the opportunity to attend this event.

However, Tatarstan residents and everyone had the opportunity to watch the ceremony on TV or on the Internet. TNV TV channel and the official website of BRICS Games broadcast the opening of the tournament live.

But at the closing of the competition, Kazan residents will have the opportunity to communicate directly with athletes — athletes were invited to celebrate Sabantuy, which is held in the city on June 23. Most likely, the ambassadors of the BRICS Games, whose roles were played by Olympic champions, will also be at the celebration. For example, multiple world champion in rhythmic gymnastics Yana Batyrshina, two-time world champion in fencing Sofia Velikaya, Olympic champion, world and European champion Alina Zagitova, heavyweight boxer Alexander Povetkin and many others. The mascot of the BRICS Games in Kazan is Bricsik the Leopard.

Mascot of the BRICS Games in Kazan is Bricsik the Leopard. предоставлено Минспорта РТ

Since Russian athletes are practically cut off from international competitions, the BRICS Games are becoming important. However, one shouldn't compare them with the Olympic Games, the Ministry of Sports urges. “There are attempts to contrast the BRICS Games with the Olympics — this is, of course, complete nonsense, they are aimed at developing sports in the country and do not serve as an alternative, it is important to understand this," Russian Sports Minister Mikhail Degtyarev said earlier. “Kazan is the sports capital of Russia, we confirm this both in terms of its contribution to the development of physical culture and sports, and in terms of events. Our task is to provide an opportunity for all states to compete without discrimination, politicisation, create equal conditions and follow the traditions of sports.”

Vasilya Shirshova

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