HANGZHOU, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- As the long-awaited Hangzhou Asian Games enter its fourth day on Wednesday, athletes from various countries have shattered multiple world records at the meticulously organized sporting extravaganza, exemplifying the essence of sportsmanship in their pursuit of excellence.
While the captivating and exhilarating sports competitions engross spectators, the event arrangements infused with technological innovations and cultural significance enable everyone to witness China's tremendous development and the unwavering passion of its people.
Media and experts are showering praises upon the Hangzhou Asian Games, heralding it as a spectacle that is "promised to be one like no other."
This photo shows a view of the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Center Stadium during the opening ceremony of the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, east China's Zhejiang Province, Sept. 23, 2023. (Xinhua/Cheng Tingting)
"I am glad to be in China, a country I love dearly that always brings back my fondest memories," said 48-year-old Uzbek gymnast Oksana Chusovitina after participating in the women's gymnastics qualification.
Having previously participated in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Chusovitina is impressed by the meticulous arrangements and the enthusiasm of the spectators every time she visits China.
Her sentiments are shared by the more than 12,500 athletes from 45 countries and regions at the largest-ever Asian Games.
In the lead-up to the event, 37,600 volunteers were enlisted by the organizers, who went to great lengths to ensure that visitors' dining, transportation, and viewing experiences were thoughtfully planned and customized according to the customs and cultural traditions of different countries and regions.
"The food is good because in the village they have halal food and I can choose that," said Kazakhstan's judoka Abylaikhan Zhubanazar, who won a bronze in men's 81 kg category.
"We found the surroundings of the venue to be exceptional, providing us with a very comfortable atmosphere," Japanese cyclist Yoshitaku Nagasako, who secured the gold medal in the Men's Team Sprint of Track Cycling, told the media.
Echoing Nagasako's words, Kazakhstan's cyclist Sergey Ponomaryov said: "I have participated in both the Olympics and Asian Games, and everything here is perfect, with high standards and all our needs met."
Volunteer representatives wave flags during the Hangzhou Asian Games and Hangzhou Asian Para Games Volunteers Commencement Ceremony in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province, Aug. 24, 2023. (Xinhua/Huang Zongzhi)
China has committed to presenting a green and intelligent Asian Games to the world. Through such a sporting extravaganza, China has not only fulfilled its commitment but also showcased its achievements in green development and technological progress on the international stage.
During the opening ceremony, the 70,000 spectators were left in awe by the grand and dazzling fireworks display. However, this stunning spectacle did not cause any pollution. It was brought to life through cutting-edge technologies like 3D animation and AR techniques.
Self-driving shuttle services are available at competition venues, and 5G technology enhances the game-watching experience for spectators.
The extensive application of digital technology is another highlight of this year's Asian Games. On the opening night, a digital torchbearer symbolically crossed the iconic Qiantang River and arrived at the main venue to ignite the wave-shaped cauldron, a momentous occasion that signifies the first digital ignition ceremony in the history of the Asian Games.
The Hangzhou Asian Games also achieved two significant breakthroughs in the realm of green energy: the first-ever complete supply of renewable electricity to all venues, and the inaugural use of carbon-zero methanol for the primary cauldron at the opening ceremony.
"This is my second time in China. This place is very beautiful, full of new technology, which is very good for young people to learn," said Dilnaz Murzataeva, a fencing athlete from Uzbekistan.
"From the beginning ... we were enchanted by the charm and beauty of the presentation. There was a wonderful visual display that took us on an artistic journey through the history and culture of China," exclaimed Dana Thaer Khaled Kharaz, a young reporter from Palestine.
"We have experienced the capacity, imagination and competence of the Chinese people and technicians to put together a ceremony," said International Olympic Committee (IOC) Vice President Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr.
Oksana Chusovitina of Uzbekistan acknowledges the spectators after competing in the Vault of Artistic Gymnastics Women's Qualifications and Team Finals at the 19th Asian Games in Hangzhou, east China's Zhejiang Province, Sept. 25, 2023. (Xinhua/Cheng Min)
SYMBOL OF ASIAN UNITY
The Hangzhou Asian Games served as not just a platform for Asian athletes to compete in sports, but also a crucial stage to showcase the cultural diversity of Asian nations and foster unity across the continent.
"The Hangzhou Asian Games provided a unique opportunity for people from 45 countries and regions to come together, where diverse traditions and cultures converged," Yasuhiro Inomata, deputy secretary-general of the Aichi-Nagoya Asian Games Organizing Committee.
"This holds significant importance in promoting intercultural exchanges and mutual learning in Asia, as well as fostering regional and global peace," Inomata added.
The massive scale of this year's Asian Games not only reflects the development achievements in sports throughout Asia, but also symbolizes the unity of Asian people, Raja Randhir Singh, acting President of the Olympic Council of Asia, said, noting that the Hangzhou Asian Games presents to the world a positive image of the mutual love and friendship shared by Asian people.
"As spectators, we felt that the message of unity and love was not just words but a feeling that reminded us that, despite our differences, we are all interconnected and harmonious like one big family," Kharaz, the reporter from Palestine, said.
The Asian Games are an important platform for promoting unity among countries in Asia and strengthening cultural exchanges and mutual learning, Samir al-Musawi, head of the Iraqi delegation to Hangzhou, told Xinhua.
The games create a positive atmosphere for enriching cultural exchanges among different countries and regions, greatly contributing to global cultural exchanges and mutual learning, he added.