December 17, 2022

NEOM Beach Games 2022 showcases NEOM’s capacity to host global sport events in unique destination

  • More than 500 athletes from 25 countries competed at NEOM Beach Games across six weeks
  • Sports included kitesurfing, triathlon, basketball, beach soccer and mountain biking

NEOM, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, December 17, 2022 – NEOM, the global development taking shape in northwest Saudi Arabia, has successfully wrapped up the NEOM Beach Games 2022 after hosting over 500 athletes from 25 countries. Between October 19 and December 9, NEOM witnessed thrilling competitions that received wide international media coverage.

The series of dynamic sport events commenced with freestyle kitesurfing on October 19, followed by an Olympic-level competition of short-course triathlon. Other events included 3x3 basketball and 5x5 beach soccer, the latter of which saw world champions Brazil secure both the men’s and women’s trophies. NEOM Beach Games concluded on December 9 with a desert mountain bike race that saw 220 male and females from around the world take part in the four-stage event, each athlete cycling 80-120 kilometers per day.

To ensure maximum global exposure, each sport federation participating at NEOM Beach Games had its own global live feed to broadcast the action. BBC screened the Super League Triathlon NEOM event, while Sport TV ­– the biggest sports channel in Brazil – broadcast the NEOM Beach Soccer Cup to a potential audience of over 200 million.

Jan Paterson, Managing Director of Sport at NEOM, said: “NEOM Beach Games has been a milestone for NEOM and its success will help to further position the region as a natural hub for sport. Additionally, the Games saw Saudi athletes compete alongside fellow participants from 25 countries in triathlon, 3x3 basketball, beach soccer and mountain biking , reflecting NEOM’s role in providing opportunity for local talent to compete on the global stage.”

“We believe the ongoing collaboration between NEOM, the national federations and the rights holders of each sport will positively impact the national sporting ecosystem and we look forward to seeing more dynamic sport events take place in NEOM in the future.’’

To highlight NEOM’s capability as a host for major global sport events, three of the five rights holders that were part of the NEOM Beach Games chose the final events of their respective calendar seasons to be hosted in the region. 

Joan Cusco, Beach Soccer Worldwide President, said: ''I believe we could host the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup here. Everything is set up, everything is ready, all the services are excellent. Everyone wants to help here and the people are so friendly, from the highest management to the people who are working on the doors and the ball boys and girls, and fans. It has been an amazing experience coming to NEOM.''

The popular Beach Soccer Worldwide, with an audience of over 250 million in 180 countries, was one of the federations to close its season in Saudi Arabia, delivering 24 exciting games over four days.