General Sports Authority
The General Sports Authority (GSA) is the government body responsible for sports in Saudi Arabia. The General Sports Authority was previously known as the General Presidency of Youth Welfare (GPYW), which was created in 1974.
The General Presidency of Youth Welfare (GPYW) was established in 1974 by royal decree by the late King Faisal Bin Abdul-Aziz. In July 1987, the GPYW launched the Leadership Institute campus, the main Saudi entity accredited with training the youth to become expert trainers in sport..
The GPYW became known as the General Sports Authority in May 2016, following a royal decree restructuring the entity and placing Prince Abdullah bin Musaad Al Saud as its chairman.
Mohammed Al-Sheikh was appointed to the position of chairman of GSA in April 2017, replacing Prince Abdullah bin Musaad Al Saud. On September 6, Mohammed Al-Sheikh was replaced by Turki bin Abdel Muhsin Al-Asheikh at this position.
After the appointment of Turki Al-Asheikh as chairman in 2017, a committee was formed to find local talent in Saudi Arabian youth, and develop them into professional footballers. 70 young persons were admitted in the first edition of the program. Some tournaments and award systems were also restructured: The Crown Prince Cup was renamed the Super Cup, and the First Class Tournament became the Prince Faisal bin Fahd Tournament. The reward of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Cup was raised from SAR 5.5 million to SAR 10 million.
Women in sportsEdit
In July 2017, the Saudi government announced physical education classes would be made available to girls in public state schools.
Greatest Royal RumbleEdit
The event showcased a 50-men Royal Rumble match rather than the traditional 30-men for the first time in the history of WWE. Braun Strowman, who was the 41st entrant in the match, won by lastly eliminating Big Cass. Strowman later received the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble Trophy and a new Belt Kingdom Championship from Chairman of the Saudi General Sports Authority, Turki bin Abdel Muhsin Al-Asheikh and WWE Chairman Vince McMahon.
This event marked the beginning of a ten-year strategic multi-platform partnership with WWE and the Saudi General Sports Authority.
The GSA represents Saudi Arabian sport at an international level and manages the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee as well as all thirty Saudi sports federations. Locally, it defines all sporting objectives. Current work by the GSA covers five areas:
- Increasing the society’s level of participation in sports and physical activity
- Creating a competitive sports industry
- Developing the quality of local sports facilities
- Improving financial sustainability of the sports sector
- Achieving more transparency in its institutional performance and culture
Most sports facilities in Saudi Arabia are owned and managed by the GSA. This includes twenty-four sports cities and stadiums such as the King Fahd International Stadium as well as indoor halls and swimming pools. Twenty-two youth hostels with sports facilities are operated by the GSA across Saudi Arabia as well as two permanent youth camps in Ta'if and Ha'il.
The following are past chairmen of the General Sports Authority:
- General Sport Authority, Kasc.com
- Naif Khalaf Alotaibi, A Historical Study of Saudi Theatre with Reference to the History of Theatre in the General Presidency for Youth Welfare, Exeter.ac.uk, 3 June 2013
- Fawaz Khairy Alhakami, An examination of sport clubs privatisation strategy in Saudi Arabia, Brunel.ac.uk, 2014
- General Presidency of Youth Welfare (GPYW), Saudinf.com
- Mariam Al Jaber, تعرف على رئيس هيئة الرياضة السعودية الجديدv, Alarabiya.net, 23 April 2017
- بأمر الملك سلمان ... تركي آل الشيخ رئيساً لهيئة الرياضة السعودية, Aawsat.com, 6 September 2017
- استاد الملك عبدالله جوهرة في جيد العروس, Alwatan.com, 18 July 2013
- Master plan, Sauditd.com
- Kingdom’s sports authority chief announces major revamp on Saudi football, Arabnews.com, 2 September 2017
- Her royal highness Princess Reema bint Bandar Al Saud, Worldcancercongress.org
- Minky Worden, Saudi sports reforms give girls in the kingdom a running start, Nytimes.com, 9 July 2017
- About us, Gas.gov.sa
- بيوت الشباب, Gsa.gov.sa