Official Website of Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council
Gearing up for Commonwealth Day
Sunday, January 26, 2014

British High Commissioner to Kenya, Christian Turner (L), with the Queen's Baton in Nairobi, Kenya on Jan 13, as he takes part in running the Baton from his residence to Karura Forest as a way to conclude its two day tour in Kenya as it goes on its trip across Africa ahead of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Picture: EPA

With the Commonwealth Games just months away, the 53-nation Commonwealth community will celebrate Commonwealth Day on March 10 this year.

Since 1977, the occasion has been celebrated every year on the second Monday of March.

The day is marked by activities around the Commonwealth, including a multi-faith Observance at Westminster Abbey in London attended by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Head of the Commonwealth.

Young people, schools, communities and civil society organisations around the world will celebrate the theme '#TeamCommonwealth'.

It reflects the spirit of friendship and the drive towards achieving shared goals and values that exist between the Commonwealth's member countries.

"The Commonwealth, in its unmatched diversity, shows the power and potential in acting together. Team spirit brings the enormous strength of solidarity, unity and of collective striving for greater achievements," said Kamalesh Sharma, the Commonwealth secretary-general, in a press statement yesterday.

"We draw inspiration and understanding from one another and our combined efforts build resilience. Working together, we win.

"Between July 23 and August 3, some of the world's finest athletes will be in Glasgow for the 20th Commonwealth Games.

"As we admire the perseverance and competitiveness of these men and women, we will doubtlessly also witness great team spirit and be inspired," he added.

Brunei are in the process of selecting the sports and athletes to represent the country at the Commonwealth Games after the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports' national selection and evaluation committee held their first meeting of the year at the Conference Room of the Hassanal Bolkiah Stadium in Berakas a fortnight ago.

If Brunei does send a team to Glasgow, it will be the seventh time the country will compete in the Games.

The Sultanate became a member of the Commonwealth in 1984 and established a National Olympic Committee (BDNOC) the same year.

However, it was not until the 1990 edition in Auckland, New Zealand, that Brunei competed in its first Games.

Since then, the Sultanate has competed in every edition of the tournament - but has yet to return with a medal.

The country was only represented in lawn bowls at the last edition in New Delhi four years ago.

A total of 11 athletes - six men and five women - flew the flag for Brunei at the Games.

The men competed in the singles, pairs and triples events while the women laced up for the pairs and triples.

Brunei played host to the Queen's Baton Relay Glasgow 2014 last October, the event a huge success with the participation of hundreds of youth.

The relay, which lasted more than two hours, passed through 12 schools.

Speaking during the event, Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council (BDNOC) vice-president Hj Muhd Zamri Dato Paduka Hj Hamdani said that the country had already started preparing for the Games.

"We have received the invitation from Glasgow already. We will go through the usual process with the sports associations nominating their athletes first," said Hj Muhd Zamri in a previous report in The Brunei Times.

"It will then be brought up to the Selection committee before the confirmation of the sports we will participate in," added Hj Muhd Zamri, who was also the co-chairman of the relay's organising committee.

The Sultanate, which organised the relay on Oct 29, was the eighth of 71 Commonwealth destinations since its journey started from Buckingham Palace in London on Oct 9.

The relay will end its journey at the opening ceremony of the Games in Glasgow, Scotland on July 23.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will be the last to receive the baton before officially declaring the Games open.

Courtesy from Brunei Times