St Helena Sports


St Helena first became involved in international sport when it accepted an invitation from the Isle of Man in 1985 to take part in the newly organised Island Games held in the Isle of Man that year,

Funding was provided by the Governors Discretionary Fund and voluntary donations as well as through fund raising activities to send a team of athletes and shooters and a manager to take part in the Isle of Man Sports.

A further team was sent to the Island Games held in Guernsey two years later: this too was funded by public subscription.

This was the last time St Helena could participate in the Island Games largely because of a lack of funding, until in 1997 interested persons in the Island of Jersey became interested in bringing St Helena back to the Games and launched a successful appeal in Jersey to raise sufficient funds to fund the travel costs of a team of six competitors and a manager to participate in the Island Games. About this time the Foreign & Commonwealth Office offered also to assist but as Jersey had already reached it target the monies granted by the FCO were set aside to help finance a future Games set down for Gotland, Sweden in 1999.

The Island Games Association of St Helena has been formed for the purpose of identifying sponsors and raising funds through local activity to enable a team of sportsmen to travel to the Games in Gotland in 1999. If successful the Island Team will have to travel more than 5000 miles to the Games.


Eric Benjamin

Chairman, Island Games Association of St Helena


Update 2013:
St Helena has continued to participate in international games as well as expanding the island sports associations. There are now football, cricket, volleyball, tennis, golf, shooting and yachting groups on the island. St Helena has also been able to send teams to a bumber of the Commonwealth Games and is a member of the International Island Games Association. In 2011, the cricket team was able to make its international debut at the World Cricket League. For people outside of St Helena, the island is probably best known for two main sports attractions. The first is the beautiful golf course, which brings tourists with their golf clubs in from all over the world. The second is the Governor's Cup, a yacht race between Cape Town and Saint Helena island held every two years in December. Completion of the proposed airport will very likely allow for more international competition, as well as a broader array of sports associations to form and be sustainable on the island.


Read more about Island Games 1999

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