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OCA exec to PH: Bid for Asian Games

BY KRISTEL SATUMBAGA

 

OLYMPIC Council of Asia Vice President Wei Jizhong suggested the country should bid for “bigger events” like the 2030 Asian Games after his first-hand experience with the ongoing 30th Southeast Asian Games.

Wei shared his detailed observations during Monday’s press briefing at the World Trade Center, citing the spectacular opening ceremony at the Philippine Arena on Saturday to the little details such as the world-class facilities, guidebooks, traffic, venue and volunteer hospitality.

OCA Vice President Weil Jizhong (left) is urging PH officials to bid for Asian Games. Also shown are POC president Cong. Abraham Tolentino (center) and PHISGOC CEO Tats Suzara. (Ali Vicoy)

OCA Vice President Weil Jizhong (left) is urging PH officials to bid for Asian Games. Also shown are POC president Cong. Abraham Tolentino (center) and PHISGOC CEO Tats Suzara. (Ali Vicoy)

“The Philippine Arena is perhaps a unique arena in the world. We witnessed the enthusiasm of all athletes, and showed the excellent tradition of the SEA Games so far,” he said.

“This means that Philippines is capable to organize bigger-scale games.”

Wei was also delighted with the attitude of the Filipino people showed towards sports as among the major factors that impressed him.

He disclosed that he attended the ice hockey event at the Mall of Asia Ice Rink and was surprised that the venue was packed with spectators even if the sport is not as popular as others like basketball.

Wei also said the glitches in the early days of the competition are normal, as other host nations have already experienced it.

Philippine Olympic Committee president Bambol Tolentino welcomed the idea, saying: “Wala namang masamang sumubok. Ie-evaluate pa nila yan.”

The next two Asian Games hosts have already been named with Hangzhou, China hosting the 19th edition in 2022 and Nagoya, Japan hosting the 20th edition in 2026.

 

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