Taipei 2017 Summer Universiade Draws to Successful Close
Taipei, 30 August 2017 – At the end of an exceptional Closing Ceremony in Taipei Stadium, the 29th Summer Universiade drew to a successful close earlier this evening. The ceremony marked the end of an outstanding 12 days of sport, education and culture. 7,734 athletes from 134 countries competed in 271 medal events across 21 different sports.
“Our student athletes came here to Taipei from all over the world. And when they came to train and compete, they found excellent conditions for sport,” FISU President Oleg Matytsin said.
Key among those conditions, athletes found exceptional spectator support. 83% of tickets (more than 700,000) were sold. This represented a new development in terms of the host city’s appreciation for live international sports events.
Taipei 2017 Chief Executive Su Li-chiung explained: “Countless people bought tickets to watch the games, which people in Taipei do not usually do. The overwhelming cheering from the audience was also a great motivator for the athletes.”
Benefitting from high-quality fields of play and exceptional spectator support were the athletes, including many Rio 2016 Olympic champions. Two world records were broken, in archery and weightlifting. In the men’s javelin competition, both the winning and second place throws would have comfortably won gold at the recent IAAF World Championships in London.
“The best performances happen when there is a crowd filled with passion to lift up the athletes,” President Matytsin said. “That is exactly what FISU found for every sport in Taipei. The crowds had a great knowledge of sport. They made so much noise for the athlete in first place. And they made the same noise for the athlete in last place.”
Andreas Hofmann (Germany), who threw a world-leading javelin personal best only to find himself lose out on Universiade gold by 29 centimetres, said: “It was crazy. The competition, the result and the overall experience I had competing here were both great, just great.”
Other records broken at Taipei 2017 included those related to organisation. More than 300 hours of coverage was broadcast to more than 100 countries, while live streaming brought in over a million viewers to a single game of volleyball, which was featured as a Facebook live event on FISU’s fan page. The Bravo bear mascot sold out, as more than US $1 million of merchandising was sold.
In addition to the sports competitions, Taipei 2017 featured cultural activities and also educational programmes aimed at helping today’s student athletes become tomorrow’s leaders. The programmes notably included athlete dual career seminars.
Speaking at the Closing Ceremony to a sold out crowd of 22,500 at Taipei Stadium, President Matytsin said: “The athletes who are here now go will go on to be the leaders of tomorrow, I am sure they will remember the lessons they have learned here. They will have learnt from the values of sport and also from Taipei’s values.”
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The International University Sports Federation – FISU Founded in 1949, FISU stands for Fédération Internationale du Sport Universitaire (International University Sports Federation). FISU was formed within university institutions in order to promote sports values and encourage sports practice in harmony with and complementary to the university spirit. Promoting sports values means encouraging friendship, fraternity, fair-play, perseverance, integrity and cooperation amongst students, who one day may have responsibilities and even key positions in politics, the economy, culture and industry. Open to student-athletes aged between 17 and 25 (for events in 2016 and 2017 the upper age is still 28), FISU’s events consist of Summer and Winter Universiades and the World University Championships. Universiades are multisport events staged in odd-numbered years, while the World University Championships are single-sport events, staged in even-numbered years. Besides its sporting events, FISU stages educational events, such as the FISU Forum on University Sport, the FISU World Conference on Development through Sport, the FISU World Conference on Innovation - Education - Sport, the FISU Sport Education Summit and the FISU Seminars. With FISU’s motto being “Excellence in Mind and Body”, all events include educational and cultural aspects, bringing together sport and academia from all over the world to celebrate in a true spirit of friendship and sportsmanship. FISU cooperates in developing its events and programmes with all major international sports and educational organisations. As major outcomes of those collaborations, in 2015, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) proclaimed the International Day of University Sport to be celebrated on 20 September, and the Anti-Doping Textbook and teaching materials were developed with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). FISU is composed of 170 Member Associations (National University Sports Federations). The FISU General Assembly elects the members of the FISU Executive Committee, its board of directors. Fourteen permanent committees advise the Executive Committee in their specialised areas. For the daily administration of FISU, the FISU Executive Committee relies on the Secretary General, who is assisted by the FISU staff. FISU’s headquarters are in Lausanne,
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