E-sports could be Olympic medal sport in 2024 Games

Russian Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov. He was surprised to learn that Sochi was stripped as the host of next year’s bobsleigh and skeleton world championships. Photo kremlin.ru Viet Nam News Bobsleigh/Skeleton LAUSANNE — Sochi was stripped on Tuesday as the host of next year’s bobsleigh and skeleton world championships amid accusations of state-sponsored doping against Russia, bringing a furious reponse from Moscow at what it dubbed a baseless "political decision". The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation (IBSF) had come under pressure to move the event from the 2014 Winter Olympics host city after last week’s damning report by Canadian law professor Richard McLaren which implicated more than 1,000 Russian athletes in at least 30 sports in a state-sponsored doping programme. "The IBSF executive committee felt that during this difficult time it is prudent not to organise such an event in Russia," a statement by the sports governing body read, adding a new location would be decided in the coming days. Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov reacted immediately, saying Russia "enormously regretted" the decision. "We’re convinced that this was a political decision. It’s based on statements without any evidence," Peskov was quoted as saying by the R-Sport agency. Russian Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov expressed his surprise. "There is an agreement for the organisation of these world championships that no one has terminated," Kolobkov told R-Sport. "We must look very carefully at the agreement signed by our Federation with the International Federation. We will clarify these issues and make decisions in the future."…... [read more]

LONDON: Russia hijacked international sport by using more than 1,000 athletes in an "institutional conspiracy" to win medals at the Sochi and London Olympics and other global events, a top investigator said on Friday (Dec 9). Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren, who has previously accused Russia of "state-sponsored" cheating, said in a new report for the World Anti-Doping Agency that he had confirmed the switching of samples at the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014 and that salt and coffee were used to manipulate samples. More than 1,000 athletes in the summer and winter Olympics and Paralympics "can be identified as being involved in or benefiting from manipulations to conceal positive testing", his report said. Information on 695 Olympic athletes had been sent to sports federations. "Well known and elite level athletes" were among competitors whose tests were "falsified". "A cover-up that evolved over the years from uncontrolled chaos to an institutionalised and disciplined medal-winning strategy and conspiracy," McLaren said as he introduced his report. Russia's sports ministry again denied state backing for doping. But the report said the campaign that started about 2011 came under official control from 2012 under then sports minister Vitaly Mutko amid fears that the cheating would be detected. "An institutional conspiracy existed across summer and winter sports athletes who participated with Russian officials within the ministry of sport and its infrastructure," said McLaren. "These activities were supported by senior Russian officials, including the minister and deputy minister of sport." CORRUPTED OLYMPICS About 30 sports including football…... [read more]

TOKYO: Medals for the Tokyo Olympics will be made from old smartphones and other electronic products, organisers said Wednesday, as they look to give the Games an environmentally friendly hue. "Medals made with recycled metals from discarded mobile phones and other gadgets can be a symbol of sustainability and public participation," spokeswoman Hikariko Ono told reporters. Ono said details, such as whether some or all of the medals will use recycled metals, will be decided later. Recycled medals have been used for the Games since the Vancouver Winter Games in 2010, Ono said. Gold and bronze medals using recycled metals were also made for this year's Rio Olympics, she said. It remains unclear whether the use of recycled metals would be cost efficient, though officials are keen to rein in soaring costs. Experts have said that the total Games budget could hit an eye-watering US$30 billion - four times the initial estimate and almost triple that of the 2012 London Olympics. Source AFP... [read more]

Fukushima being considered as venue for baseball’s qualifying rounds in Tokyo Olympics 2020. — AFP Photo Viet Nam News TOKYO – Tokyo 2020 Olympics organisers on Wednesday approved a plan to hold part of baseball’s qualifying rounds in the disaster-hit Fukushima region to support its recovery from the 2011 tsunami and nuclear accident. The organising committee "would like to contribute" to the quake-hit region, spokeswoman Hikariko Ono said at a press conference. "None of the board members voiced their objection," she said. The move still has to be formally approved by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), with a final decision expected sometime in December, Tokyo 2020 spokesman Tetsuo Ogura told AFP earlier in the day. The tsunami, triggered by a massive undersea quake on March 11, 2011, left more than 18,500 people dead or missing and swamped the emergency power supplies at the Fukushima nuclear plant, sending its reactors into meltdown as cooling systems failed. Tens of thousands of people evacuated their homes and farms at the time. The Japanese government has been working to rebuild the region but some areas near the crippled plant remain uninhabitable because of radiation dangers. Fukushima has two baseball stadiums with a capacity of 30,000 each, located dozens of kilometres away from the "difficult-to-return zone" designated by the government. Tokyo 2020’s decision comes after IOC President Thomas Bach met last month with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and said the committee was considering the plan as an option. It would "contribute to the regeneration…... [read more]

Hanoi brings first Asian Games to Vietnam Vu Duc By Vu Duc - The Saigon Times Daily HCMC - Hanoi won the rights to host the 2019 Asian Games (ASIAD) ahead of Indonesia’s second biggest city of Surabaya after hot favorites Dubai of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) pulled out of the running at the last-minute, the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) said on Thursday. The Vietnamese capital was selected at the OCA’s general assembly in Macau, after super-rich Dubai’s stunning withdrawal to leave Surabaya as the only other bidder. Surabaya was instead awarded the 2021 Asian Youth Games. For the first time Vietnam will host this major Asian sporting event. Vietnam made an official bid to host the 18th edition of the event last March and was shortlisted in the top four candidates, along with the UAE, Taipei of Taiwan and Indonesia. However, Taipei withdrew its bid in March. Hoang Vinh Giang, Vice Chair of the Asian Olympic Committee/Vice Chair and Secretary General of the Vietnam Olympic Committee, said that Vietnam plans to spend only US$150 million on this event. This figure is half the original estimate of US$300 million. China spent 122.6 billion yuan (US$19.63 billion) hosting the Asian Games in 2010 in Guangzhou, when nearly 10,000 athletes took part. Hanoi will host major sports events and opening and closing ceremony. Other events will be held in the cities of HCMC, Danang City and Haiphong City. The provinces of Binh Thuan, Quang Ninh, Hai Duong, Bac Ninh, Thai…... [read more]

Top Vietnam kiter chases sponsor for KTA champs Michael Smith By Michael Smith in HCMC KINN Team member Nguyen Duc Long is a big chance in this year’s KTA freestyle competition - Photo: Michael Smith Mui Ne’s strong winds and bumpy ocean conditions have bred some of Asia’s top freestyle kiteboarders. Out there amid the blustering swarms of wind-filled kites of Russians and every other nationality who descend on Mui Ne for the season, local beach boys defy gravity, catapault and somersault like trapeze artists. One of the young stars risen from the ranks of the beachboys is Nguyen Duc Long of the KINN Team. Currently number three KTA Asian Freestyle Champion, Long feels ready to dominate and take over the number one spot in Asia this year. “I’m confident I can win, my level has got higher since last year,” Long says. To win Long needs to attend all four Kiteboarding Tour Asia (KTA) events, the first one in Indonesia on Bintan Island February 20 -24, then Thailand, the Philippines and China. To win Long says his fitness and skill won’t be a problem - he trains kiteboarding three days a week and in the low season he kept peak fitness doing Taekwondo. The problem is that the KINN team only has enough money to send one member of the team, Long, to all four events and they are looking for sponsorship to send another team members and support. The local 20-year-old, however, doesn’t relish going alone. “I don’t…... [read more]

After a Russian doping scandal plunged the Olympic movement into one of its worst crises, top figures in world sport meet on Saturday in a bid to overhaul global drug testing. Relations between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the body it created to promote clean competition, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), hit historic lows ahead of this summer's Rio Games. Some IOC leaders accused WADA of reacting too slowly to evidence that Russia was running a massive state-sponsored doping programme and questioned the agency's governance. WADA countered that it has been left dangerously under-resourced. Saturday's summit in Lausanne, Switzerland is an effort to turn the page and forge "a more robust, more efficient and more independent worldwide anti-doping system," an IOC statement said. Olympic chief Thomas Bach will huddle behind closed doors with the head of the world athletics governing body (IAAF) Sebastian Coe, FIFA boss Gianni Infantino and WADA president Craig Reedie. The heads of the Russian, American and Chinese Olympic committees will also be on hand. Bach will hold a conference call with reporters at 2:30 pm (1230 GMT) to discuss the summit's outcomes, but the prospects for concrete decisions are uncertain. - What does the IOC want? - Currently, anti-doping controls are run by individual sports federations, with WADA overseeing global compliance -- essentially trying to ensure that federations follow a broad set of rules. Bach has said unequivocally that the IOC wants testing to be removed from the federations' hands to do away with a…... [read more]

The Hanoitimes - ​PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc yesterday received President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC)Thomas Bach and President of the Olympic Council of Asia(OCA) Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah on the occasion of their visits to Vietnam to attend the fifth Asian Beach Games (ABG5). PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc and President of the International Olympic Committee At these meetings, the PM thanked the IOC and the OCA for their support for Vietnam's sports over the recent years, adding that the Vietnamese Government is paying attention to developing sports and improving people's lives through cultural exchanges between nations. The nation's sports are deeply integrating into the world's sports and choosing suitable ways to exploit its advantages and limit its shortcomings, he said. He suggested the IOC and OCA advocate Vietnam in all fields for the development of its sports and deeper integration into the region and the world in the future. IOC President Thomas Bach congratulated Vietnam on winning the first gold medal at the Olympic Rio 2016, expecting that the successful organization of the ABG will contribute more to the development of the world's sports. He affirmed the commitments of the IOC and OCA for Vietnam's sports in the future. OCA president Sheikh Ahmad Fahad Al-Sabah supposed that the success of the ABG 5 not only makes huge contribution to the development of sports but also helps Vietnam to promote tourism. The ABG 5 is underway from September 24 and will last till October 3 with the participation of more…... [read more]

Viet Nam News ĐÀ NẴNG - The Government of Việt Nam continues to stress tourism's key role in the country's socio-economic development, and it hopes that sports and athletics will help play a big part in doubling the tourism industry's future growth. Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam stressed this stance in his opening ceremony remarks at the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) International Conference on Tourism and Sports in Đà Nẵng on Saturday. "The cross section of sports and tourism has developed into a key driving force for growth, and we've seen benefits for many nations since the UNWTO and the International Olympic Committee teamed up in Barcelona in 2001," Đam said. "The link between sports and tourism builds bridges between the world's people, but it brings nations closer to peace and prosperity," he said. He said tourism contributes around 10 per cent of global economic growth, but Việt Nam and nations wish to push that figure into double digits. Đam said the conference will help Việt Nam improve the tourism industry with experience and lessons on the connection between sports and tourism. Taleb Rifai, General Secretary of the World Tourism Organisation, said the fifth Asian Beach Games in Đà Nẵng city serves as obvious evidence of Việt Nam's capacity for organisation. He said: "It is also concrete proof of the important link between tourism and sport-and the reciprocal relations between these two aspects, such as the Olympic and the Paralympic Games. Mutual support for mutual development between…... [read more]

(TITC) - On 24 September 2016, in Da Nang, the Vietnamese Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism organized the International Conference on Tourism and Sports on the occasion of the 5th Asian Beach Games. Da Nang Declaration on promoting tourism and sports for sustainable development was approved at the conference. UNWTO INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON TOURISM AND SPORTS DA NANG, VIET NAM, 24th September 2016 DA NANG DECLARATION ON PROMOTING TOURISM AND SPORTS FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT SETTING THE SCENE On 24th September 2016, the Government of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam, officials from UNWTO and its Member States together with representatives from the tourism industry, the sports industry, policy makers, international organisations, the civil society, international experts and the media met to discuss the potential for tourism and sports to stimulate sustainable socio-economic development. The meeting took place on the occasion of the 5th Asian Beach Games hosted in Da Nang by the Government of Viet Nam and its Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. AWARE OF: Understanding that the fundamental aim of UNWTO is “the promotion and development of tourism with a view to contributing to economic development, international understanding, peace, prosperity, and universal respect for, and observance of, human rights and fundamental freedoms” as set out in the Statutes of the Organisation and incorporated into the 1998 UNWTO “Global Code of Ethics for Tourism”; Aware of the fact that access to leisure and sports is also a fundamental human right that is embodied in the 1948 UN ‘Universal…... [read more]

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