Kazakhstan capital Astana is set to host the 2023 Asia and Oceania Sambo Championships ©FIAS

It is hoped that the inclusion of events for blind and visually impaired athletes at this year's Asia and Oceania Sambo Championships in Kazakhstan capital Astana for the first time will help encourage other events provide opportunities. 

Blind and visually impaired competitors will join participants in the adults, juniors, youth, and masters categories in the Championships, sponsored by Russian oil company Rosneft, due to start at the Beeline Arena next Wednesday (June 7) and conclude on June 11. 

"This year, for the first time in history, the Asia and Oceania Championships among the blind and visually impaired sambists will be held, where athletes from different countries of the world will take part," said Alamjon Mullaev, International Sambo Federation vice-president and head of the Sambo Union of Asia.

"FIAS continues to pay great attention to the involvement and adaptation of people with disabilities in our sport, to create opportunities for holding international tournaments."

Mullaev hopes it will lead to continued growth of this this side of the sport.

"I am sure that in the near future other continental federations will be able to adopt our experience," he said.

"Another feature of the upcoming Asia and Oceania Sambo Championships will be the holding of combat sambo competitions among women and juniors."

Australia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Japan, Jordan, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, New Zealand, Palestine, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are set to take part in the event.