City of Prelog hosted representatives of the sports, political and economic life of Croatia at the Opening ceremony of the Plazma Youth Sports Games under the auspices of INA (the leading company in the petroleum industry in Croatia)
A large sports and entertainment program began at 11am with a performance by Zaprešić boys band, followed by a protocol part of the program and an opening ceremony. The ceremonial program was led by Doris Pinčić, and all competitors and guests were welcomed by numerous athletes and ambassadors of the Plazma Youth Sports Games: current and former Croatian national football team captains Luka Modrić and Darijo Srna. '"My dearest YSG friends, it is wonderful to see how you have returned to sports courts throughout Croatia and the region. I share your happiness and enthusiasm and that we changed our main parole again from “At home is awesome” to “Games are awesome!”, said Luka from Madrid. The new ambassadors of the Plazma Youth Sports Games, Domagoj Duvnjak, the captain of the handball team, handball player Nikola Karabatić, and Johannes Hahn, the European Commission's Commissioner for Budget and Administration also sent messages of support to the small competitors. "It is an honor to be in such a respectable company of ambassadors, and it is my greatest pleasure that I can bring to you, dear children, closer to the beauty of sports”, said Duvnjak.
The flame of the Plazma Youth Sports Games was set on fire by Davor Božinović, Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister and representative of the Croatian Prime Minister Mr. Andrej Plenković, Zdravko Marić, President of the Plazma Youth Sports Games, Dražen Srpak, member of the Croatian Parliament and representative of the Croatian Parliament, Barbara Dorić, member of the board INA - the Official sponsor of The Opening ceremony, Tomislav Družak, Secretary of State in Central State Office for Sport, W.Robert Kohorst, US Ambassador, Mira Nikolić, Serbian Ambassador and Ljubomir Kolarek, Mayor of Prelog.
Mr. Božinović enjoyed the fan atmosphere, as well as the household of small athletes who guided him through the sports program: "I would like to thank the organizer for the magnificent opening and for spreading one message of tolerance, friendship and healthy lifestyle. I am indescribably glad that the Ministry contributes greatly to this through various educational and preventive actions intended for children."
Zdravko Marić, President and the founder of Plazma Youth Sports Games, emphasized: ”I would like to thank the Croatian Government for its excellent cooperation, and I would like to extend special gratitude to the host city, Prelog. Through competition we try to explain to children how important it is to socialize, have fun and to cheer in a fair play way. I want children to enjoy themselves in the months ahead of them and to be together at the final in Split, because the Games are always open to them.”
The town of Prelog is proud on their outstanding young athletes, investments in sports, cultural and educational programs. Every event regularly completes gorgeous majorettes of the city of Prelog who have prepared a special performance, and talented little star Matej Mateković. Tihomir Gudić, Executive President of the Plazma Youth Sports Games, presented his recognition and gratitude for the long - term cooperation to the Mayor of Prelog.
The sports program began at 12am with Kinder tournament in street basketball, Coca - Cola Cup tournament in football for girls that the Plazma Youth Sports Games conduct in cooperation with UEFA, as well as dodgeball and athletic. Minister Božinović tried to play basketball and performed the initial kick of Kinder tournament in street basketball, and the initial kick at Coca-Cola Cup in football. Teams were competing for the place at the State finals in Savudrija at the end of June and in Split in July. The program was broadcast live on N1 and Sport Club TV. Visitors were welcomed by numerous entertainment corners, but also by the presentation of representatives of the Ministry of Interior as part of the educational campaign “Be a fan, not a smasher” and the program in cooperation with the National Road Safety Program. Educational-informational corners on the importance of recycling plastic packaging and environmental protection follow all events of the Tour of Joy of Plazma Youth Sports Games, which is taking place this year in cities all over Croatia. Education on self-sustainability is an important segment of all activities of the Plazma Youth Sports Games.
The event was organized in accordance with the instructions and measures of the Croatian Institute for public Health and National Crisis Headquarter of the Republic of Croatia.
After a short pause in March, numerous events and tournaments were immediately cancelled and transferred to the next year, so the Plazma Youth Sports Games is one of the few world events that have continued their season. The Plazma Youth Sports Games is the largest amateur sport event in Europe and a kind of phenomenon that, with its 24-year tradition, testifies that good vision, systematic work and persistence can overcome all challenges and create a unique brand that has been recognized and supported by numerous international institutions, top athletes and officials, as well as sponsors.
The closest organizational team of Plazma Youth Sports Games counts 13 associates and 700 coordinators and field leaders as external associates who organize more than 250 qualification tournaments by the year in 10 sports disciplines (Coca - Cola Cup in football, futsal, Kinder basketball tournament, handball tournament, volleyball, Croatian Post Cup in tennis, table tennis, the beach volleyball tournament, chess, dodgeball and athletic) more than 30 days of sports-educational events as a part of the Tour of Joy, the state finals in Savudrija and Split, the international finals in Split and the opening and closing ceremonies of the Plazma Youth Sports Games.
The Youth Sports Games are currently active in 3 countries: Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, with more than 200 000 children and youth participating annually in their systems.