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About fair play principles at Universiade in Kazan


Beauty and spectacularity of sports competitions depend not only on the athletes' skills but on their fair and noble behaviour. On the press conference which took place on July 8, the President of the Fair Play International Committee Jenö Kamuti and Sports Advisor to the Director General of the Kazan 2013 Executive Directorate and coach of many Olympic champions Olga Pavlova told why it is important to follow the principles of a noble game.

Unfortunately, the wish to win at any price but not honesty and respect to opponents often appears at the topside in modern sport.

"The Universiade is good by the fact that it preserves the spirit of sport, mutual respect and friendship. It is not only sports competitions but a great celebration for the whole city and all its citizens," marked Mr. Kamuti. By the way, he himself is the world champion and a silver medallist of the Olympic Games, four-times Universiade Fencing winner, so he knows the atmosphere of great competitions from his own experience.


What is Fair Play? It is a code of ethical and moral laws based on inner beliefs on nobleness and farness in sport. The sports community first thought about necessity to create movement which would defend these principles in 1960 after the Olympics in Rome. In 1963 in Paris the International Fair Play Committee was created. Its main partners are the International Olympic Committee and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

In his speech Jeno Kamuti emphasised that starting from the 27th Summer Universiade 2013 in Kazan the Committee obtained one more support – it is the International University Sports Federation (FISU)

There are a lot of examples in modern sport where the competition rules themselves are not enough and the athletes have to adopt decisions proceeding from inner beliefs and ideas. So did the gymnast Aleksey Nemov when after undeserved loss at the Olympics in Athens in 2004 he calmed an angry audience; pole vaulter Sergey Bubka who gave his pole to the opponent at the World Championship in South Africa and many others. There was also an episode in Mr. Kamuti's career when he adopted a decision to help the opponent and give him his foil as a result of which the opponent gained victory, however the act of Jeno Kamuti turned this loss into a moral victory.


"I am sure that sport is necessary not only for body development but for spiritual development. Behaviour on the competitions arenas must be an example of behaviour in life. I think that it is better to lose but to preserve the dignity and nobleness," he said.

The aim of the International Fair Play Committee is a worldwide promotion of principles of a noble game. Every country necessarily has a representative of this organisation. Olga Pavlova told on how Fair Play is followed in Russia and in Kazan.

"There are a lot of principles of a fair game and one of them is social responsibility of athletes, the intention to help orphaned children, war veterans, to assist in restoration of architectural monuments. The Olympic champion Yuliya Zaripova adopted a decision to give all money earned by her victory to an orphan home and to the Republican Fund on Restoration of Historical and Cultural Monuments of the Republic of Tatarstan which is responsible for the restoration of Bolgar and Sviyazhsk. Moreover, it was done not for journalists' or public attention but by the good will," told Pavlova.


Examples are given by the hockey player Danis Zaripov who built a hockey court and a fitness hall in his native village, and the multiple world champion in trap shooting Svetlana Demina who trains children suffering from blood cancer, participates in competitions with them.

"An athlete who gained great results in sport, cannot act otherwise in life," said Olga Pavlova.

Jeno Kamuti added that during the Opening Ceremony of the Summer Universiade 2013 in Kazan, he talked with many athletes and official persons and everyone concurred that competitions are impossible without the Fair Play spirit.

It should be noted that an exhibition prepared by the International Fair Play Committee is opened in the Main Information Centre located on the territory of the Universiade Village.

Media Department of Kazan 2013 Executive Directorate