NEC boss to get sec­ond taste of Games ac­tion

Solihull News - - IT TALK -

NEC boss Phil Mead will re­live for­mer glo­ries when bad­minton comes to town for the Com­mon­wealth Games in 2022!

Mead, who heads the Group’s three Com­mon­wealth Games venues, rep­re­sented the Isle of Man at bad­minton in the 1982 Games in Bris­bane, Aus­tralia.

He missed out on a medal, fin­ish­ing sixth, but was just pleased to have been in­volved in the event, dubbed the “Friendly Games”.

“It was a fan­tas­tic ex­pe­ri­ence that’s stayed with me all of my life,” Mead said.

“It re­ally lived up to the Friendly Games and I’m absolutely sure we can repli­cate that if not do bet­ter here in 2022.

“I have a pas­sion for the Com­mon­wealth Games. But I al­ways feel guilty when I’m along­side real ath­letes!

“Birm­ing­ham has a great rep­u­ta­tion in bad­minton.

“For 25 years the city has hosted the Yonex All- Eng­land cham­pi­onship, the Wim­ble­don of bad­minton watched through­out the world.

“The fact we have bad­minton still within our venues and the ex­pe­ri­ence on how to present it is all a bonus.”

Bad­minton is one of seven sports that will be staged at NEC Group venues through­out the Games. Five sports – box­ing, judo, ta­ble ten­nis, weight lift­ing and wrestling – will be held at the NEC alone. It prom­ises to be a lo­gis­ti­cal night­mare.

But Mead is con­fi­dent his staff will “demon­strate our cre­den­tials” and “fly the flag for Birm­ing­ham”.

“Many of those sports we’ve hosted at world level al­ready, so we have some ex­pe­ri­ence on that front,” he said.

“We’re proud of our rep­u­ta­tion, but this multi- sport di­men­sion is new to us. We have a great rep­uta- tion for de­liv­er­ing ma­jor sports at these venues – just this year the World In­door ( ath­let­ics) Cham­pi­onships, the Yonex All- Eng­land bad­minton and World Cup gymnastics. We fin­ish off the year with BBC Sports Per­son­al­ity of the Year so we’ve got a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence in ma­jor events. We’re re­ally con­fi­dent, but we can’t be com­pla­cent so plan­ning has al­ready started four years out.”

Com­mon­wealth ath­letes with chair­man of Birm­ing­ham 2022 John Crab­tree ( third left) and MD for Venues at the NEC Phil Mead ( third right)

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.