Asian Games Doha 2006

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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Medals of the Asian Games

Amazingly, there are 3,200 medals. It might be a mere number for many but it is not. This is amount of medals to be won at the 15th Doha Asian Games. And vying for these will be athletes from 45 nations, displaying their wares in 39 various sporting disciplines and 423 events.

As it happens in any Games, the sweat and effort put in on the field by the competitors is for these gold, silver and bronze medals, given away at the Victory Ceremonies by various personalities. And with Doha Asian Games approaching closer, the man at the helm of managing the show when the athletes step onto the victory podium — Abdulla Ibrahim Al Mirza, Manager of Victory Ceremonies, Ceremonies and Cultural Events Department, Doha Asian Games Organising Committee, understandably is a busy person these days.

“We all know that Victory Ceremonies are an integral part of the Games. And the 15th Doha Asian Games’ ceremonies will be a unique experience for all,” promises Al Mirza while speaking to The Peninsula in an exclusive interview.

It's important to know that the gold medal is made up of 92.5 per cent silver, 7.5% bronze plated by 1.5u m of gold. The silver medal will have 92.5% silver and 7.5 per cent bronze while bronze medal consists of 92.5% bronze and 7.5% zinc. In fact, all these medals are of 60mm diametre with 3mm thickness and 135g except for bronze which weighs 115g. These specifications are abided by as per the Olympic Council of Asia regulations.

Indeed, Al Mirza says that the task of producing these medals has been entrusted to the Australian company, Perth Mint. “Perth Mint is producing the Games medals. The medals would arrive in Doha next month,” he announced.

When it comes to the design of the medals, he said that the Doha Asian Games Organising Committee had invited designs from the public last year and one of them was selected, but there were few modifications incorporated. “The medals design is based on the tradition of Qatar. In the front, Orry, the official Games mascot, runs in front of Zubara Fort, an important cultural landmark in Doha city. Orry is carrying the Doha 2006 Torch. We must consider that on the other side, the Doha 2006 logo is set against a blazing Asian sun which is supported by a semicircle of linked rings. A traditional Qatari pattern is embroidered into the burgundy ribbon, which will be attached to the medal,” he noticed.

We must mention that a special music for the Victory Ceremonies is composed by a German based in Doha. That music is unique and would catch the attention of all, according to Al Mirza. “The music for the Victory Ceremonies is composed by a German musician, who is based in Doha. We have two versions of it, the short and the long one. For individual medals’ presentations which takes five minutes, the shorter version will be played while the team presentations would consume 9 to 12 minutes giving way for the longer form.”

The athletes have an option of getting their names engraved on the medals. Despite it, it would be done after the ceremonies at the request of the winners. The top three placed athletes will also be handed over a Orry wearing a special medal.

In fact, all those medals will reach various venues four hours in advance with a special team escorted by security personnel. “We have formed different teams to transport the medals to various venues with security personnel. All the medals will be at the Dagoc office and prior to the medals bus leaving the premises, it undergoes a thorough check and the exercise is repeated once the bus reaches the venue,” Al Mirza expressed about the arrangements.