Runners from Aberdeen Amateur Athletics Club got to test themselves against an African sprint champion this month as Adam Idrissa took part in the athletics open graded meeting at Aberdeen Sports Village on 13 July. Idrissa won the race comfortably but will face stiffer competition next month when he takes on Usain Bolt in the 100m. He is one of 43 Cameroon athletes who for the last two weeks have been using the city's Sports Village and the Robert Gordon University's (RGU) Sport Centre for their pre-games training camp before the Olympics next month. Athletes also visited local primary schools and met with shoppers at the city's Union Square.
Cameroon athletics coach, Clement Tsoungui, said: "I had never heard of Aberdeen until three months ago when the Cameroon committee announced they were negotiating a deal for us to train there. After that, I wanted to know more about the city and now I think it's great. We are very happy here."
RGU sports director, Filippo Antoniazzi, is optimistic Cameroon will be the first of many Olympic teams to make use of the university's state-of-the-art facilities: "We are doing everything we can to ensure the Cameroon squad has a great time here and that will give us a track record of hosting international teams. Aberdeen is a vibrant city with fantastic facilities and I expect much bigger nations to be showing an interest in coming here in future."
Aberdeen Sports Village is a joint venture of the University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen City Council and sportscotland and was officially opened in 2009. It offers an array of first-class facilities and opportunities to sport and exercise enthusiasts and athletes from the northeast and wider area. Meanwhile the RGU sport centre was established in 2005 to improve the sporting infrastructure available for the region and to act as a social hub for the university's Garthdee campus.