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Anticipation builds for Hangzhou Asian Games among Chinese citizens

www.ehangzhou.gov.cn| Updated: September 1, 2023 L M S

With less than a month to go for the Hangzhou Asian Games, Jia Weiye, a 36-year-old resident of Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province, purchased two e-sports competition tickets this week, undoubtedly one of the most anticipated events of the upcoming sports extravaganza.

"This is the first time that e-sports has been included as an official event in the Asian Games. Being an avid gamer, I'm eagerly looking forward to experiencing the electrifying atmosphere alongside fellow gaming enthusiasts," said Jia, adding that he has also purchased tickets for the men's soccer final.

The Hangzhou Asian Games boasts an unprecedented number of events, encompassing traditional Olympic disciplines such as track and field and swimming, as well as culturally distinctive sports like martial arts, sepak takraw, cricket and Brazilian jiu-jitsu.

In addition to e-sports, breakdancing will also make its debut as an official event in this edition of the Asian Games. As of Aug. 26, tickets for all available sessions of table tennis, badminton, swimming, diving, tennis, and 30 other sports have already been sold out.

In an effort to ensure a hospitable experience for international visitors during the Games, 69-year-old Yin Yongmei, along with more than 30 local volunteers, is actively engaging in an English learning class facilitated by a community in Gongshu District.

"Having improved my English skills, I'm confident that I'll be able to assist foreign guests during the Asian Games," said Yin, who has learned a range of everyday English phrases, from greetings to expressions of gratitude.

Near the West Lake, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, 18 service posts have been set up for the visitors, equipped with guidebooks, sewing kits and other services for free.

In Shangtang Village, located in Tonglu County, an abandoned pond has been revitalized into a 1,600-square-meter fitness park, accessible to the public without charge.

"The environment here has improved greatly. Many young people engage in sports activities on weekends. It's a great initiative for the localites," local resident Ye Aijun said.

Along with efforts to ensure a streamlined Asian Games, preparations for the post-Games utilization of venues were set in motion well in advance. Comprehensive plans have been mapped out for 51 out of the 56 competition venues for their future use and sustainable operational entities have been identified.

"From the initial planning and hosting stages to post-Games utilization, the lasting impact of 'Sports Make Life Better' will be palpable, contributing to an increased sense of well-being and accomplishment among the residents," said Li Qidi, dean of the school of physical education and health sciences at Zhejiang Normal University.

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