The inclusion of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) in the African Games has been hailed as a significant achievement for the Global Association of Mixed Martial Arts (GAMMA). The announcement comes after a revision of the initial program, which now includes MMA along with e-sports, speedball, sambo, and teqball as part of the demonstration sports. These sports will accompany the 15 Olympic sports and 10 non-Olympic sports already announced for the games.
The decision to include MMA in the continental games is seen as a positive step forward for GAMMA, which already boasts 24 recognized and active member federations in Africa. This milestone highlights the growing recognition and popularity of MMA in the region, as well as the efforts of GAMMA to promote and develop the sport.
Organized by the African Union (AU), the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), the Association of African Sports Confederations (AASC), and the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa (SCSA), the African Games are a highly anticipated sporting event in the region. The 2023 edition, set to take place in March 2024 in Accra, Ghana, will now feature MMA as part of its wider sports program.
The inclusion of MMA alongside other established sports provides an exciting platform for athletes to showcase their skills and compete on an international stage. It also opens up new opportunities for Olympic qualification, as many of the Olympic sports included in the program offer pathways to the Paris 2024 Games.
Commenting on the inclusion of GAMMA and MMA into the event, GAMMA President Alexander Engelhardt said, “One of our core missions as an organisation is to ensure we are offering the best competition opportunities for our entire MMA community. We are absolutely delighted that the organisers have included us as one of the demonstration sports and we hope that this will be a catalyst for inclusion in other multi-sport games in the future. The work of our organisation, the quality of our athletes, our ability to stage the very best events, and the value of our global community is being recognized by our inclusion and this event will surely help our sport to continue its rapid growth.”
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