The under secretary of state for culture and sports in Greece Lefteris Avgenakis held a meeting with the ICMG general secretary Iakovos Filippousis ©CJIM

Greek Government officials have confirmed they are considering a bid for the 2030 Mediterranean Games and the Mediterranean Beach Games by Iraklion on the island of Crete.

"We are exploring the possibility of bidding for Iraklion in a bid which will aim towards athletic development," said under secretary for sport Lefteris Avgenakis after meeting International Mediterranean Games Committee (ICMG) general secretary Iakovos Filippousis.

No specific timeline for 2030 bids has yet been made public, though the ICMG Charter stipulates that candidate files must be submitted one year before the vote, which is taken six years in advance of the Games.

Avgenakis said he had asked the ICMG "to continue the friendly and extremely productive collaboration between the two sides which has led to the exceptional organisation of the 2019 Mediterranean Beach Games in Patras."

The bid has already been discussed by the Iraklion City Council and has been described as a "priority for the leadership of sport in Greece."

The next edition of the Mediterranean Games is due to take place in Oran in Algeria in 2022 ©Getty Images
The next edition of the Mediterranean Games is due to take place in Oran in Algeria in 2022 ©Getty Images

There have also been indications that they might also support a bid for the Beach Games to be staged in the same city before 2030.

Iraklion is the fourth largest city in Greece and was a sub centre for the football tournament during the 2004 Athens Olympics.

The only time the full Mediterranean Games have been held on Greek soil was in 1991 when Athens was the host.

The 2013 Games were originally awarded to Volos and Larisa but these were withdrawn after financial difficulties meant the organisers were unable to give the necessary guarantees. They eventually took place in the Turkish city of Mersin.

The next Games are scheduled for Oran in Algeria but these have already been moved back to 2022 in the wake of the pandemic while Taranto in Italy is set to stage the Games in 2026.