Diplomat tells of pride at raising Welsh flag in Qatar ahead of World Cup

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Diplomat tells of pride at raising Welsh flag in Qatar ahead of World Cup
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A Welsh diplomat has told of his pride at raising his country’s flag at an official ceremony in Doha to mark Robert Page’s side’s participation in the World Cup.

Daniel Phillips, from Anglesey, who works at the British Embassy in Qatar’s capital, hoisted the Welsh flag on a mast along The Corniche waterfront promenade on Thursday night.

The event was to celebrate the last qualifiers for the tournament.

Wales, Australia and Costa Rica have now joined the other 29 sides which will be participating in November.

Mr Phillips, the embassy’s deputy director of trade and investment, said he was looking forward to seeing Wales compete in the team’s first World Cup since 1958, after beating Ukraine in a play-off final earlier this month.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) said it will be issuing advice to fans travelling to the country for the tournament. (FCDO/PA)
Daniel Phillips speaks to officials during the ceremony to hoist the Welsh flag (FCDO/PA)

He said: “It was a tremendous privilege for me to raise the flag on behalf of Wales, as we look forward to being at a football World Cup for the first time in 64 years. A huge congratulations to everyone in the Welsh team.

“Coming from Cemaes Bay in Anglesey, I’m hopeful Wales can build on their success at recent Euros and put a real mark on the tournament.”

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office said it will be issuing practical advice and tips to fans ahead of the World Cup.

Any fans considering travel to the tournament should read the Qatar World Cup Travel Advice, and sign up for email alerts to stay up to date on the latest information, the department said.

Acting ambassador Alex Cole, who was also at the ceremony, added: “Everyone at the British Embassy here in Doha will be wishing the very best of luck to both home nation teams throughout the tournament.

The Welsh flag beside the flags of the USA and Costa Rica. (FCDO/PA)
The Welsh flag takes pride of place among the flags of the teams that have qualified (FCDO/PA)

“We want to ensure fans are fully prepared by providing practical advice and tips, to keep problems to a minimum and help them enjoy the tournament.”

Simon Hart, Secretary of State for Wales, said: “This hugely talented Wales team has already made history by qualifying for our first World Cup in 64 years and it is fantastic to see the national flag raised in Qatar.

“I wish Robert Page and his players the best of luck as they represent Wales on the biggest stage in world football later this year.”

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