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Saturday, August 27, 2016, 18:03

Olympic delegation vows support for SAR athletes

By Willa Wu

Olympic delegation vows support for SAR athletes
Fu Yuanhui, who won a bronze medal in Swimming for China, speaks at a press conference in Hong Kong on August 27, 2016. A 64-member delegation of mainland Olympic stars arrived in Hong Kong Saturday on a three-day visit. (Photo AFP/Isaac Lawrence)

HONG KONG – The delegation of mainland Olympic heroes brought a promise, soon after their arrival in Hong Kong, to continue to give full support to the development of athletics in the SAR and to build a win-win situation.

The promise was made by Liu Peng, director of China's General Administration of Sport, soon after the 64-member delegation arrived in the city just before noon.

Liu, in a meeting with Hong Long media, said he was excited when hearing that all 5,700 tickets to the athletes' public shows had been sold out within a few hours.

He noted that the enthusiasm of Hong Kong people would encourage mainland athletes to attain the Olympic motto, "faster, higher, stronger."

Liu told the gathering Saturday afternoon that 416 athletes from the mainland participated in the 2016 Rio Olympic, the largest contingent ever fielded by China for an overseas Olympics. He also noted that the average age of this year’s Olympians, 24, is the youngest average over the past three Olympic Games.

He had high praise for the young athletes, not only for showing the world their strength, sportsmanship and athletic prowess, but also for their positive and optimistic spirit.

Joining the delegation for the media event was Timothy Fok Tsun-ting, president of the Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong.

The progress of Hong Kong athletes was closely connected to mainland's support and guidance, he said.

Olympic delegation vows support for SAR athletes
Liu Peng (center), director of China's General Administration of Sport and Timothy Fok Tsun-ting (right), president of the Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, attend a press conference in Hong Kong on Aug 27, 2016. (Xinhua photo)

Fu Yuanhui, the Chinese woman bronze medalist in the backstroke, said she had always wanted to visit Hong Kong and try the local cuisine.

When asked about her exuberant post-match interview in Rio which went viral online, she said at that time her brain went blank as she was told she had made the finals, and all she could think about was the phrase "prehistoric power” to describe that she had done her very best.

The internet darling, who visited Shanghai Disneyland before coming to Hong Kong, said she could not make it to Hong Kong Disneyland this time but will do so when she returns for a personal visit.

Star table tennis coach Liu Guoliang also became an internet celebrity.

He told the gathering, as long as fans were happy and took pride in the national team, he was fine with the funny remarks of netizens.

Swimming gold medalist Sun Yang said he enjoyed Hong Kong and remarked on how nice and friendly the people are.

For the next two days, the athletes who took part in diving, swimming, badminton and table tennis will showcase their skills for Hong Kong fans.

The delegation will also pay a visit to a home for the elderly, local primary and secondary schools, as well as the Hong Kong Sports Institute.

The delegation will leave Hong Kong for Macao on Aug 29.

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