Twenty-three countries. Five days of padel challenges. One hundred and twenty-eight athletes in the court. Nine medals. Three disciplines: Men’s, Women’s and Mixed. And one cry: “We Are Unity”, the universal motto of the upcoming European Games scheduled in Krakow, Poland, from June 21 to July 2.
The event’s padel tournament, a direct emanation of the European Olympic Committees, will last five days and will have its epilogue – the semifinals and finals – in the historic, extraordinary Old Town Market Square in Krakow, a jewel set in the urban reality of the ancient Polish city founded in the year 965. That square, which since its origins has been the beating heart of Krakow’s social and political life, is a symbol not only of the country’s history, but also of tourism, thanks to its opportunities for recreation and entertainment. Well, the Market Square symbol of sociability and friendship will be the ‘stadium’ where the bronze, silver and gold medals of the European Games of our discipline will be awarded. Yes, the padel court for the crucial stages of the three padel tournaments will be mounted right in the Market Square. There could not be a more representative and metaphorical venue for the five days of padel, a discipline that has experienced and is experiencing its growth precisely through the strong impulse towards sociality, inclusion, cultural exchange.
Padel is able to find new energy precisely in the tens of thousands ‘squares’ – the clubs around the world, formidable instruments of passion and dissemination of our sport – which, thanks to the incessant work of the national federations, the Fip, the players’ and players’ associations and the attention and support of the European Olympic Committees. That is the way our sport is living the dream of participating in a competition against the backdrop of which the five Olympic circles stand out, a goal dreamed of and pursued by every athlete in the world. Exactly 90 days are left to the opening of the European Games, which will stage 29 disciplines in which the best national teams from all European countries will participate. There is only one thing to add: we can’t wait to see and join all this!