Interview: Palestinians look forward to earning medals at Hangzhou Games: official

(Xinhua) 14:06, September 07, 2023

RAMALLAH, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) -- Over 100 Palestinian athletes are gearing up for the Hangzhou Asian Games in Hangzhou this month, aiming to win medals and elevate Palestine's name during the tournament, a senior Palestinian official said.

The 19th Asian Games, slated for September 23 to October 8 in China's Zhejiang province, has seen over 12,000 athletes entries from all over Asia.

"China has great experience and a high capacity in hosting sporting events, and this thing we see through our teams that follow up with the organized Chinese teams by defining the arrival program, accommodations, and all technical matters," Nader Jayousi, head of the Palestine Asian Games delegation, told Xinhua.

Jayousi, who will visit China for the first time, believes there will be a high level of organization. He noted that China consistently hosts major sporting events, setting a global standard.

"Participating in such an important tournament would present a golden chance to the Palestinian athletes to prove their professional and sports skills to the world by competing with athletes from various countries," Jayousi said, adding that the current Palestinian delegation is "the most important participating delegation in history as our athletes will compete in 17 competitions, including football, beach volleyball and e-sports, which hits a record high in Palestine Asian Games participation history."

Jayousi acknowledged the challenges ahead, stating, "we know very well that our mission will not be easy in the Asian games to achieve all our goals, mainly as the Asian players have succeeded in improving their skills."

However, he emphasized the significance of the Asian Games in gauging the players' abilities and aiding in their qualification for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Moreover, Jayousi mentioned that the Palestinian athletes, through their participation in the Asian Games in Hangzhou, aim to foster friendly ties with other athletes and gain invaluable experience.

Despite Palestine's consistent participation in every Olympic and Asian Games, it secured only a bronze medal in 2002, Jayousi said. He highlighted recent significant achievements in Palestinian sports, the most recent being at the Arab Games in Algeria in July.

Jayousi emphasized the Palestinian delegation's commitment to participating in sports competitions, despite the challenging conditions in the Palestinian territories that have impacted all facets of life, including sports.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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