The Arafura games was multi-sport event hosted in Darwin Australia, bringing together sports people from the Oceania region. It was one of the few sporting events in the world where both disabled and able athletes competed in the same program.
Arafura is the sea that flows between Northern Australia and South East Asia, which is why the name of the event is Arafura Games.
This event was held after approximately every two years. It's was a one-week long event and athletes from all around the world participated in the wonderful city of Darwin.
There were a number of sports played in the Arafura Games such as, Basketball, Shooting, Football, Boxing, Cricket, Table Tennis and many more.
The Arafura Games started in the year 1991 with basketball the only sport played. The event grew to over 30 plus sports played by thousands of athletes. In 2005 athletes with disabilities were also included in the events. There was a hiatus between the 2011 Arafura Games until 2019.
2019 Arafura Games
The Arafura Games was due to be held in 2013, but was canceled because the new government decided it was too expensive to run. In 2014 the NT government announced that the event would never return, however it returned in 2019, held from 26 April to 4 May 2019. Fifteen sports were chosen for the 2019 Games including, Athletics, Table Tennis, Boxing, Football (Soccer), Badminton, Swimming, Archery, Tennis, Muay Thai, Sailing, Volleyball, Weightlifting, Basketball, Hockey and Netball.
2021 Arafura Games
The next Arafura games was scheduled to be held from 14-22 May 2021, however, due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the event was postponed and was expected to be held in 2023. However, in 2022 the 2023 event was cancelled and no future events was planned.
The 14 sports which were confirmed for the 2021 Arafura Games included:
· Athletics (including Para-Athletics and the Mitchell Street Mile)
· Basketball (5x)
· Muay thai
· Sepak Takraw
· Swimming (including Para-Swimming)
· Table Tennis (including Para-Table Tennis)
· Tennis (Para program only)
· Volleyball (Beach, Indoor and including Para-Volleyball)