Türkiye's delegation head to Chengdu Universiade in high spirits

(Xinhua) 16:50, July 25, 2023

ISTANBUL, July 25 (Xinhua) -- The first batch of Türkiye's delegation, including athletes and coaches, departed on Monday from Istanbul to attend the 31st FISU World University Games in Chengdu.

Mehmet Gunay, president of the Turkish University Sports Federation, told Xinhua that Türkiye's athletes are excited to experience China's rich cultural and historical traditions.

"It is important for us to build relationships with the Chinese people while learning about China's rich and ancient cultural customs and historical richness," he stated.

Gunay added that China had prepared well for the Games, talking up the facilities constructed using high technology and environmentally-friendly systems.

Türkiye are bringing 155 athletes to the Games, with high hopes of success in taekwondo, fencing, archery, and gymnastics.

Yilmaz Goktekin, head coach of Türkiye's artistic gymnastics team, said five Turkish gymnasts would participate in the Games.

"If they perform well, they could be in the top five. But of course, this is the competition. It doesn't forgive even the slightest mistake," Goktekin told Xinhua.

The coach added that besides the excitement of the competition, the athletes are also eager to see the high-tech innovative products on show in Chengdu.

"China, as you know, is always at the forefront of technology. We will go there and see. We have to be open to such things [high-tech] now. We will experience them, and we will try to make use of them," Goktekin said.

Sevval Ilayda Tarhan, a shooting athlete, said she previously visited Beijing and attended a championship there in 2019.

"Chinese people are very warm, very friendly," Tarhan told Xinhua. "China is a very welcoming country. At the same time, there are a lot of places to visit and see. And I have to say: It is an immaculate country."

Tarhan added that she was very excited to see pandas for the first time. "I am curious about Chengdu. They say it is the city of pandas. I want to see the pandas," she said.

Discussing the high-tech features of the Universiade, such as electric vehicles and robots, Tarhan praised them for being all environmentally beneficial and efficient. "It will be a nice experience because I see a lot of driverless vehicles on the internet. I see videos of them. I will be experiencing it for the first time," she said.

The Universiade will take place in Chengdu, southwest China's Sichuan Province, from July 28 through August 8, featuring a total of 18 sports.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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