Once again, the Polish AZS Inclusive Table Tennis Championships were held in the hospitable hall of the Polish Table Tennis Association in Gdańsk. More than 90 players with disabilities from 23 universities competed for the title of best in 10 starting classes.
‘In these competitions, everyone wins, as everyone fights not only directly against the rival on the other side of the table but also against their own weaknesses. We are proud to have had the chance to organise this competition for the fourth time. The IMPs in table tennis have already had their beautiful history, and we can see how incredible progress is made by those players who come back to us,’ reports the Deputy Director of the Center for Physical Education and Sport UG (CWFiS UG) and the representative of AZS University of Gdańsk Tomasz Aftański, the main organiser of the tournament.
The AZS Polish Inclusive Championships are a series of 12 sporting events annually, and table tennis is becoming one of the most popular. The participation of AZS clubs representing as many as 23 universities is a beautiful quantitative confirmation. ‘It is a measure of how we function in society that everyone can participate in all activities, in artistic and sporting life. Without barriers. And this is what the AZS Polish Inclusive Championships serve to do - they allow students with disabilities to achieve the highest laurels, show their activity and compete in the sports arena,’ points out the Vice-Rector for Student Affairs and Education Quality at the University of Gdańsk, dr hab. Arnold Kłonczyński, prof. UG. ‘We invariably invite you to Gdańsk for the subsequent editions of the IMPs. It is an important event for us,’ adds the Vice-Rector of UG, who is also a member of the Board of AZS Social Organisation in Gdańsk.
This year's edition of the AZS Table Tennis IMPs was held under the Honorary Patronage of the Rector UG prof. Piotr Stepnowski, and the Vice-Rector prof. Arnold Kłonczyński was accompanied at the medal ceremony by the Director of the UG Centre for Physical Education and Sport, dr Jan Patok, the UG Vice-Rector's Plenipotentiary for the Disabled dr Justyna Rogowska, President of the AZS UG Academic Club Piotr Walczak and dr Marta Dalecka, representing the Academic Sports Association, Vice-President of the AZS Governing Body for Sports for Persons with Disabilities.
The University of Gdańsk was represented best by Justyna Kamińska, who defended the championship title in her class, and Alicja Grabowska, who made her debut at the event and also won gold. The bronze was taken by Kajetan Kołodziejski and Marcin Biernacki. Huge congratulations to our entire team and coach, Małgorzata Aftańska.
In addition to competing in 10 starting classes, the representatives of the individual Universities collected points for the team classification. These included points scored by the top two competitors in each starting class. Ultimately, it turned out that the representatives of AZS Poznań University of Technology were the best in the team classification. Representatives of AZS Łódź University of Technology were classified in second place, and AZS UMCS Lublin in third. Our 'nieUGięci’ (‘UnbendinG’) team took a high 5th place!
The event's organisers were AZS University of Gdańsk, AZS Environmental Organisation in Gdańsk and the Office for Persons with Disabilities at the University of Gdańsk. Co-organisers and partners were the AZS COSA Branch in Gdańsk, the Marshal's Office of the Pomorskie Voivodeship and the City of Gdańsk. The AZS Polish Inclusive Championships are financed by the State Fund for the Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities and the Ministry of Sport and Tourism. The strategic sponsor of the Academic Sports Association is the PZU Group.