The 40th year of Union International de Pentathlon Moderne (UIPM) events kicked off in Kabul with the participation of 250 athletes from twelve provinces of Afghanistan.
UIPM is an international organization that hosts a number of events based on those held in ancient Greece. The modern variation has five track and field events.based on the skills required of a soldier in past times: shooting, swimming, fencing, equestrianism (horse racing and handling) and cross-country running.
The UIPM representatives in Afghanistan said that the purpose of these competitions is to select the best athletes for the national teams and prepare them for national and international competitions.
“Our next programs are in Pakistan, India and Egypt. If the National Olympic Committee helps us, we will send our athletes to international competitions to gain achievements for the country,” said Khoshal Sarwari, head of the UIPM sports federation of Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, athletes said they are grateful for the competition. They also said that due to the lack of facilities and funds they could not compete in all the usual events.
“We ask the country’s sports federation to pay more attention to (pentathlon) athletes so they can gain achievements for Afghanistan,” said Abdul Rashid, an athlete.