By Christof Niklaus

During the first week in October, I joined the other ICSD Technical Directors (TDs) for our site inspection visit in Taipei.  It was good to see several new faces and we all had several excellent workshops throughout the week in preparation for next year Summer Deaflympics.

For me personally, the main success was the new draft handbook for Technical Directors designed by our indispensable Wayne Langbein that will help new and existing TDs in preparation for future Summer Deaflympics and World Deaf Championships.

My main concern is linked to the incomplete football pitches and facilities at YingFeng Sport Park where there will be four football pitches for the group stages and the initial knockout stages.  The Mayor of Taipei promised us that all the venues will be completed by April/May 2009 and I have complete confidence in the Taipei Summer Deaflympics Organising Committee (TDOC) to achieve this.

The Taipei Municipal Stadium, where both the women and men finals will be held, was approaching completion and I was impressed by the size of it during our tour of the stadium.

I have made it clear to the TDOC of the specifications required for a good quality grass surface for both YingFeng Sport Park and Taipei Municipal Stadium and they will update me with a progress report each month.  I will give an updated report in each eNews as we approach September 2009.

The TDOC are aware of my request for FIFA certificated officials for the Summer Deaflympics Football Competition.  I have requested for three groups of officials, all to be FIFA certificated – international, Taipei national and deaf referees.  A total of 36 officials will be recruited for the duration of the Summer Deaflympics Football Competition.

The Summer Deaflympics Football Technical Regulations will be finalised by the end of this month (30th October 2008) and updated on the Deaflympics website accordingly.  I will also add the name of the official match ball to be used for the duration of the Summer Deaflympics Football Competition by the end of November 2008.

The 2009 Summer Deaflympics Football Competition draw was carried out on 10th October 2008 in front of other TDs and the Taipei volunteers.

The women competition, at present has seven countries with the deadline for final registration for additional teams to enter still open up to 1st June 2009.  Team 8 will be allocated to the first team that enters before the deadline.  United States, as the 2005 Summer Deaflympics Women Champions, was placed in Group A as the first team in the group.

Official Women Football Competition Draw:

Group AGroup B
United StatesOPEN
GermanyRussian Federation
DenmarkGreat Britain
South AfricaJapan





Most of the men countries qualified through their own regional confederation qualifiers while a few others made it through the reserve list.  Other countries did not submitted a preliminary registration form before the 1 March 2007 deadline which is why some countries are in the Summer Deaflympics Men Football Competition while others are not.  It is really important that each deaf sport federations complete their preliminary registration forms before the allocated deadline.  Please read Deaflympics Regulations - DG12.1 under TEAM SPORTS for details.

The men competition is now full after the confederation qualifiers.  In Group D, the 'Asia-Pacific Team' will be confirmed as soon as the Asia Pacific Deaf Sports Confederation confirms the fourth country for their confederation.  Great Britain, as the 2005 Summer Deaflympics Men Champions, was placed in Group A as the first team in the group.

Official Men Football Competition Draw:

Group AGroup BGroup CGroup D
Great BritainGermanyFranceDenmark
IrelandSpainRussian FederationUkraine
CanadaNigeriaSouth AfricaArgentina





I would like to thank the Taipei Summer Deaflympics Organising Committee for their hospitality and hard work for my first visit to Taipei.  Taipei is going to be something special for the Deaflympians next year.

Roll on Taipei.

Yours in football,

Christof NIKLAUS
ICSD Technical Director - Football