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World University Championships & the Universiades

Brief History

The World University Championships are conducted by the International University Sport Federation (FISU).

FISU's main responsibility is the supervision of both Summer and Winter Universiades as well as the World University Championships.

The following description is taken from the FISU website.

The World University Championships

The other important sport events of FISU are the World University Championships. The spreading of the university sport in the world created a new series of meetings and competitions to complete the program of the Universiade. FISU supports the competitions which represent the continuity of university sport and allows the federation to be better known.

In 2004, FISU organised 25 World University Championships that attracted 4,845 participants from a total of 186 (of which 90 different) countries. For 2006, FISU has already attributed 28 WUCs.

WUC Sports Program: Archery - Badminton - Baseball - Beach Volleyball - Bridge - Chess - Cross Country - Cycling - Equestrian - Flat Water Canoeing - Floorball - Futsal - Golf - Handball - Field Hockey - Judo - Karate - Match Racing - Orienteering - Rowing - Rugby 7 - Sailing - Shooting - Softball - Squash - Table Tennis - Taekwondo - Triathlon - Wild Water Canoeing - Waterskiing - Woodball - Wrestling

The Universiades

The Universiade is an international sporting and cultural festival which is staged every two years in a different city and which is second in importance only to the Olympic Games.

The Summer Universiade consists of 12 compulsory sports (Athletics - Basketball - Fencing - Football - Gymnastics - Judo - Swimming - Diving - Water Polo - Table Tennis - Tennis - Volleyball) and up to three optional sports chosen by the host country. The record figures are 9,006 participants in Bangkok, Thailand in 2007 and 174 countries in Daegu, Korea in 2003.

The Winter Universiade consists of 7 compulsory sports (Alpine skiing - Snowbaording - Nordic skiing composed of jump, cross country & combined - Curling - Ice Hockey - Short-Track Speed Skating - Figure Skating - Biathlon) and one or two optional sports also chosen by the host country, and gathered a record of 2,511 participants in Torino, Italy in 2007 and a record number of 50 countries in Innsbruck, Austria in 2005.

The World University Games have a tradition dating from the early 1920s, a history which is not as old as the Olympic Games nor as recent as the Commonwealth Games. The first World University Games were held in Parn 1923 and have been conducted in their current form since the 1959 Games in Turin.

Eligibility to compete depends on an athlete being between 17 and 28 and undertaking a university or college degree or diploma course (or who graduated in the year prior to the Games).

Australia was first represented in the 1967 Games in Tokyo where Ralph Doubell won a gold medal in the 800m which was a prelude to his gold in the same event the following year at the Mexico Olympics. Other Australian medallists include 1992 Olympians Alison Inverarity in the high jump and Shaun Creighton in the steeple chase. Previously Rob Woodhouse, Michelle Ford, John Sieben, Susie Woodhouse and Mark Kerry, all in swimming, have won gold.

Australia was been represented in rowing in 1987, 1989 and 1991 with distinction - but no medals.

Details of Representation at WUC

No Year Dates
1st 1984 22-24 June - Milan Italy
5th 1998 26-28 September-Zagreb Croatia
6th 2000 11-13 August-Poznan, Poland
7th 2002 22-24 August-Nottingham, UK
8th 2004 2-4th September–Brive La Gaillarde, France
9th 2006 11-13th August-Trikai, Lithuania
10th 2008 4 – 7 September-Belgrade, Serbia
11th Szeged, Hungary
13th 2014 Gravelines, France
14th 2016 Poznan, Poland
15th 2018 Shanghai, China

Details of Representation at the Summer Universiades

No Year Dates
14th 1987 Zagreb, Yugoslavia
15th 1989 Duisburg, Germany
16th 1991 Sheffield, Great Britain
17th 1993 Buffalo, USA


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