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Cindy Ngamba, who represented the European Olympic Committees (EOC) Refugee Team at the European Games Krakow-Malopolska 2023, has made history by becoming the first Boxing Refugee Team member to qualify for the Olympic Games. 

Ngamba was one of three EOC Refugee Team members in Poland in 2023, where she carried the Team’s flag at the Opening Ceremony, and will now represent the International Olympic Committee Refugee Team at Paris 2024. The groundbreaking achievement unfolded at the Road to Paris 1st World Qualification Tournament in Busto Arsizio, Italy, where Ngamba secured her qualification by winning a gripping quarter-final fight. Ngamba’s victory is a testament to her unwavering commitment and skill, stopping the formidable Valentina Khalova to secure her place at the Paris 2024 Olympics.  

Ngamba now lives and trains in the United Kingdom having been born in Cameroon and her journey to the top has been marked by resilience and determination, serving as a beacon of hope for many young athletes. Ngamba’s story illustrates that perseverance can lead to extraordinary achievements andreflects the transformative impact of sport on individual lives. 

At Kraków-Małopolska 2023, Ngamba competed in the 75kg category and left an indelible mark on the event. 

As the EOC celebrates this historic achievement, the spotlight remains on the Refugee Team’s incredible athletes, emphasising their inspiring journeys and the profound impact of their presence on the Olympic stage. 

EOC President Spyros Capralos said:

“It is truly inspiring to see Cindy Ngamba qualify for the Olympic Games Paris 2024 in boxing and make history in the process. The EOC is committed to giving opportunities to refugee athletes and focusing on the unique role that sport can play in driving social cohesion and bringing communities together. 

“We were honoured to host the first continental refugee team at the European Games last summer as a sign of our commitment and will all be supporting Cindy as she vies for glory in Paris this summer. We look forward to continuing our work with the Olympic Refuge Foundation and ensuring refugee athletes are represented at future editions of our events.” 


Four European nations will join hosts France at Paris 2024 following FIBA Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournaments

Four European nations will join hosts France in the women’s basketball tournament at the Olympic Games Paris 2024 after they secured their quota spots at the FIBA Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournaments.

The four FIBA Qualifying Tournaments were held in Belgium, Brazil, China and Hungary between 8 and 11 February, where Belgium, Germany, Serbia and Spain all booked their spots at the first Olympic Games to be held in Europe since London 2012. It is the first time that the German women’s basketball team have qualified for the Olympic Games.

They will compete against France in Paris, who are automatically given a quota place in the tournament as the host nation, with the presence of five European sides in the 12-team tournament highlighting the strength and talent within the European basketball community.

France’s Gabby Williams: A Standout Performer

Despite France already being assured of a spot at Paris 2024, Gabby Williams emerged as one of the standout players at the qualifying tournament held in Xi’an, China. Despite playing an average of just 20.8 minutes per game, Williams showcased her exceptional skills by averaging an impressive 16.3 points and 2.7 steals per game. Her dynamic presence on the court will excite home crowds at the Olympic Games, where her performances could help the French team compete for medals.

Belgium’s Emma Meesseman: A Driving Force

Belgium’s Emma Meesseman played a pivotal role in her team’s success during the qualifiers in Antwerp, where record-breaking crowds witnessed her stellar performances. Meesseman recorded 17.3 points and 7.7 rebounds per game, displaying both scoring prowess and an ability to dominate the boards as Belgium secured its second-ever Olympic quota spot in women’s basketball.

European Presence: A Cause for Celebration

As the excitement builds for the upcoming Olympic Games, the European basketball community can take pride in having more teams qualified than any other continent.

Four European teams competed at Tokyo 2020, where France beat Serbia in the bronze-medal match, and the addition of a further team is testament to the continuous growth and competitiveness of women’s basketball in Europe.


In a historic shift for artistic swimming, the Paris 2024 Olympic Games will witness a groundbreaking change, particularly impacting European athletes. For the first time in the history of the Olympic Games, men will be eligible to compete in the artistic swimming team event, adding a dynamic twist to the traditional discipline and creating gender parity.

Since its debut at the Los Angeles 1984 Olympics, artistic swimming has seen minimal changes. However, the team event at Paris 2024 introduces two significant modifications:

  1. Men’s Eligibility: Paris 2024 sets a milestone by allowing men to participate in the artistic swimming team event. This decision, endorsed by the International Olympic Committee in December 2022, provides male athletes with a platform to make history.
  2. Acrobatic Routine Introduction: Alongside the inclusion of men, the team event will feature an acrobatic routine, injecting fresh excitement and creativity into the traditional artistic swimming format.

At Paris 2024, ten teams, each comprising eight swimmers, will compete in the artistic swimming team event. Italy’s Giorgio Minisini, the first man to participate in a major senior competition during the recent European Games 2023 in Krakow, exemplifies the positive impact of this rule change.

Minisini aided Italy win three medals in the team event – silver in both the technical and free routines; bronze in the acrobatic discipline – adding to the gold in the technical mixed duet and silver in free mixed duet!

Expressing his thoughts on the rule change, Minisini stated, “We are now walking on a path towards inclusivity that will bring hope and opportunities to all athletes in our sport.” European athletes like Minisini and French swimmer Quentin Rakotomalala, aim to challenge stereotypes, emphasising inclusivity and diversity in artistic swimming.

As the Olympics approach, Europe stands at the forefront of this historic change, where men will challenge traditions and contribute to the ongoing evolution of artistic swimming. Paris 2024 promises to be a momentous chapter in the history of the sport, with European athletes playing a leading role in shaping its future.


On 9 February 2025, all eyes will be on the picturesque region of Borjomi-Bakuriani, Georgia, as the Winter European Youth Olympic Festival (EYOF) heads to the Baltic country for the first time.

As we mark the ‘One Year to Go’ milestone, we look ahead with excitement to Bakuriani 2025, which promises to be a thrilling celebration of athleticism and camaraderie, where Europe’s best young winter athletes compete against each other in the spirit of Olympism.

What is the Winter EYOF and what is its significance in European sport?

The Winter EYOFs provides a unique platform for Europe’s best young winter athletes, aged 14 to 18, to compete in an international multisport event alongside peers from across the continent. From alpine skiing to snowboarding to figure skating and more, the Games feature a diverse range of disciplines and provide athletes with their first opportunity to compete in a Games of this kind. The EYOFs have been the launchpad for the careers of many international stars, who have gone on to compete and win medals in Olympic Winter Games.

However, the EYOF isn’t only about medals and victories, it is about ensuring the Olympic Values and the spirit of Olympism is passed to the next generation of European athletes. The Winter EYOF not only nurtures emerging talent but also fosters a sense of unity and sportsmanship among the competitors, who leave having learned about other cultures, with new friendships and lasting memories. As these young athletes begin their careers, the EYOF serves as a stepping stone, propelling them towards future success on the international stage.

From Friuli Venezia Giulia (2023) to Gangwon (2024) and beyond

The Winter EYOFs provide a stepping stone to other prestigious events and already in 2024 we have seen that in action. At the Winter Youth Olympic Games in Gangwon, European athletes who made their international multisport debuts at the 2023 Winter EYOF in Friuli Venezia Giulia were among the medallists. Many of those young stars are now hoping to represent their countries at the Olympic Winter Games Milano Cortina 2026, clearly marking the opportunities to progress from EYOFs to the global Olympic stage.

Simultaneously, a new wave of aspiring athletes are gearing up for the 2025 Winter EYOF in Bakuriani. This emphasises the vital role the EYOFs play in shaping the trajectory of athletes’ careers and shows that they are not just a competition, but a pivotal link connecting the aspirations of young athletes to the grandeur of the Olympic Games.

Kona Ettel GER in action during the Snowboard Women’s Snowboard Halfpipe at the Hoengseong Welli Hilli Park Ski Resort. The Winter Youth Olympic Games, Gangwon, Republic of Korea, Thursday, 1st February 2024. ANOC/Wander Roberto. Handout image supplied by OIS/IOC.

Georgia prepares to welcome Europe’s best young athletes again!

Georgia’s ability to host international multisport events was highlighted during their successful hosting of the Summer EYOF in 2025 in its capital Tbilisi. Now they are ready to shine again. Tbilisi 2015 was a resounding success, characterised by outstanding organisation, spirited competition and a vibrant celebration of youth and sports. It showcased Georgia’s warm hospitality, cultural richness and organisational excellence, leaving a lasting impression on athletes, officials and spectators.

Now, as the clock ticks down to the grand opening of Bakuriani 2025, the excitement is once again rising. Organisers are driven to surpass the achievements of 2015 and enhance the overall experience for athletes and spectators. They will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the rich traditions, cuisine and hospitality of Georgia and to foster a deeper understanding of the diverse cultures that make up the European sporting community.

Athletes from Germany cheer during the closing ceremony at the Gangneung Olympic Park. The Winter Youth Olympic Games, Gangwon, South Korea, Thursday 01 February 2024. Photo: OIS/Joel Marklund. Handout image supplied by OIS/IOC

Stay Connected and Join the Excitement!

As we gear up for Bakuriani 2025, make sure you are staying connected through our social media channels and website. Follow us for exclusive behind-the-scenes content, athlete profiles and the latest updates leading up to and during the event. The countdown has officially begun, and there is so much to look forward to. Join us on this thrilling journey as we get Ready to Shine at the Winter European Youth Olympic Festival in Bakuriani, Georgia!