South Korea to bid for 2013 world swim meet

The Korea Swimming Federation agrees to request from the world body Fina after Dubai opted out as hosts for the 2013 World Championships.

SEOUL // South Korea will bid to host the 2013 World Championships, taking the place of Dubai, according to the Korea Swimming Federation (KSF). "We decided to bid for the 2013 World Championships at the request of the international swimming body Fina," Ki-heung Lee, the head of the KSF, told the Yonhap news agency. The event, which includes the other aquatic sports of diving, synchronised swimming, open-water swimming and water polo, takes place every two years.

If South Korea's bid is successful, it would mean back-to-back versions of the championships in East Asia. Shanghai hosts the event next year. Dubai was awarded the 2013 championships last year, triumphing over competition from Hamburg and Moscow. However, the emirate and Fina in May agreed to stage the 2013 world championships elsewhere, and South Korea appears ready to fill the void. Cornel Marculescu, the executive director of Fina, said the sport needs to fully establish itself in the Gulf region before hosting the event.

Dubai will play host to the World Short Course Swimming Championship from December 15-19 at a new 10,000-seat aquatic centre being constructed in the Dubai Sports Complex, Dubailand, at a cost of more than Dh1 billion. More than 1,000 swimmers are expected to compete at the five-day championship meeting in December, with the United States expected to send a contingent of more than 75. * Agencies