The Fina World Championships swimming pool will be constructed on Yas Island
The Fina World Championships swimming pool will be constructed on Yas Island Image Credit: Supplied

To mark the 50-day countdown, the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and Fina revealed the first images of the main competition pool for this year’s World Swimming Championships, which will take place at the Etihad Arena on December 16-21.

With the countdown to the event well and truly on, the images of the pool add to the excitement ahead of the competition, which will see the world’s best short-course swimmers from across the globe descend on Abu Dhabi in December for what promises to be an exhilarating display of talent.

In the lead-up to the event, two separate pools will be installed at Yas Island’s Etihad Arena. The installation will transform the MENA region’s largest state-of-the-art indoor entertainment establishment into a purpose-built swimming venue.

The competition pool (25m x 26m) is where the race action will take place, while athletes will also be granted access to a warm-up pool both of which will have a depth of two metres and will be filled with water from the Etihad Arena system.

The pools will be flown into the UAE from Italy in containers and built from the arena floor up, with the work scheduled to run from November 29 until December 12.

Taking place from Thursday 16 to Tuesday 21 December, the Championships will showcase the very best in aquatic sporting talent, providing both local and international fans with the opportunity to watch top-quality competitive swimming action in the heart of Abu Dhabi. They will feature men’s and women’s events in all four strokes – freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, and butterfly – along with the individual medley and relays.

Alongside the swimming inside Etihad Arena, an Aquatics Festival will also be hosted in Yas Bay showcasing high diving and open water swimming disciplines, as well as a Market Street interactive village providing entertainment for the whole family.

“Etihad Arena is the perfect location for the World Swimming Championships – not only because of the elite-level facilities that athletes and spectators will enjoy, but also because of its location on Yas Bay and Yas Island,” said Aref Alawani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, host of the event.

“We’re excited to watch the arena transform into an aquatics haven for the event. And of course, it is not only inside the Arena that our operations are focused - a 27m high dive tower will be built into the water of Yas Bay, adjacent to Etihad Arena, along with three spring diving boards. The results will be spectacular.”