Tēnei te mihi ki a koutou i runga i te kaupapa o te rā
Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa
Christchurch City Councillors Jimmy Chen, Phil Clearwater and Mike Davidson
World Bowls President, John Bell, & Chief Executive Officer, Gary Smith, Mike Spring, President, & Cushla McGillivray, Chair of Bowls New Zealand, Kerry Clark, CEO, Bowls NZ & Chair World Bowls Championships Organising Committee.
It gives me great pleasure on behalf of the city of Christchurch to officially welcome all the participants, officials, volunteers and delegates taking part in the 2016 World Bowls Championships. Welcome to Christchurch.
To the 200-plus competitors who have come from around the world to compete here this week, a very special welcome to you. Many of you have come a long way to represent your country at these World Championships and we are delighted to welcome you and host you in Christchurch.
I would particularly like to acknowledge John Bell, the President of World Bowls, and Gary Smith the CEO: thank you for your outstanding support of our city.
I would also like to pay tribute to the hard-working team at Bowls New Zealand, particularly the President, Mike Spring; the Chair, Cushla McGillivray; and CEO Kerry Clark who has chaired the Organising Committee – congratulations on putting together this wonderful competition and I am sure it is going to be a very successful event for you and for Christchurch.
I would also like to thank all the volunteers that are giving up their time to assist with the Championships – this event could not happen without your help; thank you very much for giving up your time to support this competition.
Christchurch first hosted the World Bowls Championships back in 2008; it had been twenty years since the Championships had come to New Zealand so they were very keenly anticipated then, just as they are now.
There are many, many keen bowlers and bowls fans in Christchurch and right across New Zealand, so this event will be a must-see for them and a thrill to be able to watch the worlds’ best bowlers competing on our greens.
I also hope people who are new to the sport are encouraged and inspired by the competition.
The World Championships held every four years are described as the pinnacle event of the bowling world.
It is an honour and a privilege to be your host city. It is something that our city takes great pride in.
I look forward to seeing you all at the awards ceremony after the finals next Sunday at the Burnside Bowling Club, where in my role as Mayor I am Patron; something I hold dear to my heart as it was where my grandfather played bowls for many years until he passed away.
So see you then and best luck to you all.
Nō reira Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tātou katoa