8th Asia Pacific Deaf Games to be held in Taoyuan in October
The eighth Asia Pacific Deaf Games will take place in Taoyuan from Oct. 3 to 11, city and sports officials announced yesterday in an international press conference in Taipei.
Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wentsan ( ) announced that over 1,500 athletes from 22 countries will participate in 12 different disciplines, including track and field, swimming, tae kwon do, judo, bowling, badminton, table tennis, tennis, basketball, soccer, futsal and cycling.
For many hearing- impaired athletes, the Asia Pacific Deaf Games is the second- biggest athletic event after the Deaflympics. Starting as a biennial Deaf Football Championship with only four countries in 1983, the game has expanded over the years and is now a comprehensive sports competition held once every four years, in which over 20 countries participate.
The spokesperson of the games is a 22-year-old track and field athlete of Taiwan’s national team, Wang Shih-wei ( ), who currently enjoys the national record for deaf sprint running. “Due to hearing problems, I might fall behind at the start, but I always catch up.” Wang said in his advertisement, which corresponds with the theme this year, “the power of silence,” showing his strong determination and perseverance instead of yielding to physical limitations.
Special guest deaf model and TV host Wang Xiao-shu ( ), encouraged deaf athletes by sharing her story of how she overcame her disadvantages through hard work to finally succeed. Wang also stated that people should support the games and cheer for the athletes, for “only with love in this world, can we, the hearing disabled, show our ‘silent power,’” she said.
“We want to show how much more touching and powerful the games of the hearing disabled can be,” Cheng said, also stating her hope that people can experience the warmth and charm of Taoyuan throughout the games.
Models pose for a photo at an announcement event for the Asia Pacific Deaf Games in Taoyuan, yesterday. The event will take place in Taoyuan from Oct. 3 to 11.