European Championships will return to Finland next year when Lahti will host the European Men´s and Women´s Team Championships in February 2022. The event officially crowns the best men’s and women’s teams in Europe and at the same time serves as the European qualifying event towards the World Cup, ie. the Thomas & Uber Cup finals. The U15 European Championships will be played at the same time. That is the competition where Finland’s Nella Nyqvist took the championship last year in Lievin, France.
Badminton Finland has demonstrated international-level expertise in organizing top events over the past six months by successfully and safely hosting the European Junior Championships (U19) and the European Mixed Team Championships despite the Covid-19 pandemic.
-Badminton Finland wants to make badminton the sport phenomenon of this decade in Finland and international top events are in the very core of implementing our strategy. Top events also play a major role in developing the Finnish badminton clubs. We believe that next year Covid-19 will be under control and we can offer Finnish badminton clubs and sports fans the opportunity to see the best players in Europe and in the world on site in great home tournaments, says Ville Valorinta, CEO of Badminton Finland.
-Lahti offers a completely unique conditions for the EMWTC, even on a European scale. Earlier this year, Badminton Europe decided that from 2024 onwards this tournament will be divided into qualifiers and finals, so it’s really great to get to do these historic competitions in Lahti and bring together all of the more than 60 participating teams for the last time to gather and play under one roof. A great badminton party is in store. This is also the first time in the history of Badminton Finland that adults’ top event will be held outside the metropolitan area. Badminton has more than 170,000 enthusiasts in Finland all over the country and Lahti is a short distance from many places, so we also expect a large home crowd to cheer for the Finnish teams, he continues.
-It’s great to have this event in Lahti. It is especially significant that after covid-19, international activities will be launched with a high-level top-of-the-line sporting event, which due to it´s long delay, will also provide a significant boost to the region’s industry, says Mari Kuparinen Director, City Development City of Lahti.
Tommi Lanki, Director of Sports City of Lahti, warmly welcomes the event to the Lahti Sports Center.
-The event fits nicely into the area’s infrastructure and supports the area’s year-round use. The long continuation of the value competitions is valuable for Lahti and it is nice to further expand the range of value competitions held in Lahti, says Lanki.
The combination of the European Championships for men’s and women’s teams and the U15 European Championships brought more than 60 teams and more than 750 players and their support teams to France in 2020. In Lievin, this meant an economic impact of around 600 000 € for the host city. Raija Forsman, CEO of Lahti Region, has closely promoted the European Championship project in Lahti with Badminton Finland.
-From the perspective of tourism, the event brings a well welcomed international tourist flow to the winter months and fills the city’s hotels for over a week. I believe that the world has returned, at least in part, to a new normal at the time, and both athletes and supporters of athletes bring a nice buzz to the streets of Lahti as well as to the shops and restaurants in the city center. We want to show the best hospitality to our guests and leave them the spark to return to Lahti region again, Forsman describes.
Lahti has almost 100 years of experience in organizing international competition events. The conditions offered by Lahti for organizing major events are first class. Modern facilities, services and venues serve the needs of athletes, spectators, business guests and the media. The Lahti Sports and Exhibition Center, which serves as a competition arena, is a multi-purpose entity connecting five different halls.
EMWTC will be played in Lahti week 7 in 2022.
For more on Lahti: https://visitlahti.fi/en/
Pictured Ville Valorinta, CEO of Badminton Finland, Raija Forsman, CEO of Lahti Region, and Tommi Lanki, Director of Sports at the City of Lahti.