Recent years have been difficult not only for hand-to-hand combat, Ukrainian sports, but also for our entire society. We have faced a difficult period in history – in February 2022, the war broke out. Many things were “put on hold” after this difficult news. At the same time, thanks to the heroic struggle of the Ukrainian people, international organizations, and friends in other countries, we managed to “survive” – and most importantly, to represent our country at absolutely all scheduled competitions.
Our global goal in 2023 was to participate in the World Sports Games 2023, where the sport of hand-to-hand combat was introduced for the first time.
To achieve this goal, the team of the Ukrainian Unarmed Combat Federation did a titanic job in 2022-2023. And despite all the obstacles and difficulties, 45 Ukrainian athletes took part in the World Sports Games 2023.
Yuriy Radchenko, President of the Ukrainian Federation, calls the appearance of his team a dream come true: “The CSIT World Sports Games are a symbol of peace and friendship,” he says. “This is the idea that all athletes should compete with each other only in sports, not on the battlefield.” He says that the enthusiasm at the opening parade made him realize that his dream and the dream of his athletes had come true. This feeling cannot be created artificially. It is only possible in sports.”
“The World Games will be remembered for the impressive opening ceremony with the participation of 5000 people in Garibaldi Square, where more than 44 countries gathered, participation in the competitions, as well as the closing ceremony with the removal of the CSIT flag and its transfer to Greece, the host of the 2025 World Sports Games,” – says Andrii Radchenko, Secretary of the CSIT Technical Commission. – “I would like to thank the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Ukraine and CSIT World Sports Games for their help in this difficult time. It is indeed true that a friend in need is a friend, and we are grateful to everyone who lent a friendly shoulder at this moment,” he says.
We look forward to further close cooperation on the development of hand-to-hand combat in the big CSIT family.