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The National Games welcomes Weiqi after 24 years

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The Weiqi Final of the 13th People's Republic of China will be held in Tianjin Binhai New Area, from July 5 to 8.

Weiqi has been a formal event since the first National Games, held in 1959. But afterwards at the following National Games, Weiqi has been on and off in the competition. This time, Weiqi has returned to the National Games after not being a part of it for 24 years.

Now, let's look at the history of Weiqi in the National Games.

The First National Games

The first National Games were held in Beijing between Sept 13 and Oct 3, 1959. Being the most vital Weiqi game since the founding of the People's Republic of China, the leading players were those of whom grew up in the Republic of China(1912-1949).

"Due to the National Games, Weiqi had been paid attention to by local sports management departments. The Weiqi national team was formally established in 1961;and thanks to the National Games, China had their first batch of professional Weiqi players," said Chen Zude, once the dean of Chinese Weiqi Court. He believed that the National Games gave China's Weiqi a second birth.

The Third National Games

From 1965 to 1975, Chen Zude, grew into the Chinese Weiqi player. When everyone thought that the champion of the third National Games would belong to Chen, Nie Weiping came along and took away his crown.

It was the first time Nie won the heavyweight championship, and it was also the first time that he beat Chen in a formal competition.

Nie successfully defended his heavyweight championship at the 4th National Games.

The Seventh National Games

The Seventh National Games was hosted by Beijing, and co-organized by Sichuan province and Qinhuangdao between Sept 4 and 10, 1993. In the final round, Zhejiang played against Beijing. The game attracted an immense number of people and sports departments, including top leaders of the sports department in Zhejiang and Beijing. Eventually, Beijing was crowned the champion in the 1993 National Games.

After 1993, Weiqi was removed from the National Games. Weiqi, originally a non-olympic game, suffered a devastating destruction. Meanwhile, many provinces' Weiqi teams were cut off, with many players scattered to all walks of life, and some even went on to become taxi drivers.

But over the years, Weiqi has received support and promotion from different departments including culture, art and education during the most difficult times, due to the sports charm and popularity.

Weiqi was professionalized with soccer in 1999, and the Weiqi professional league was launched in the same year. Ever since, Weiqi players have enjoyed higher salaries; Players who were once demobilized quickly rediscovered their values and positions in the Weiqi training market and the Weiqi clubs.


chinadaily.com.cn


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