The first Confucius Cup Chinese Chess Network Exchange Tournament was successfully held
The first Confucius Cup European and North American Confucius Institutes (CI) Online Xiangqi (Chinese chess) Group Tournament came to an end on the evening of Nov. 27, 2021. The European CI United Team beat the North American United Team in the 2-day competition.
The event was a pioneer of a brand new concept of inter-continental online xiangqi competitions. Not only did it showcase overseas xiangqi players’ Chinese expertise, but it also demonstrated one important aspect of the Chinese culture, building on the branding of overseas Confucius Institutes. The tournament provided a great opportunity to unite the world amid the Covid 19 pandemic, calling people from every part of the world to fight the pandemic together. The competition started a new chapter in the promotion of overseas xiangqi culture.
The event was hosted by Confucius Institute in Quebec and UCD Confucius Institute for Ireland (CII); Co-hosts include Confucius Institute in Coquitlam, Canada and Confucius Institute at the University of Helsinki, Finland; North American Xiangqi Federation and European Xiangqi Federation joined force to provide support and team forming. Mr Xiao Kai, Director of the Confucius Institute Management Centre of Beijing Normal University opened the tournament.
Two online group contests took place on Nov. 20 and 27 between the European CI Team comprising 10 players from 8 countries and the North American CI Team which included 10 players from Canada and the U.S. The European CI Team won the tournament with a total score of 28:12. A wide cohort of players participated in the event, including overseas Chinese, local Chinese, xiangqi masters and young xiangqi enthusiasts.
UCD CII director Prof. Liming Wang remarked in his opening speech that overseas Confucius Institutes have the responsibility to promote xiangqi--a national treasure in the Chinese culture; UCD CII is committed to promoting xiangqi overseas and has held numerous Confucius Cup xiangqi competitions in Ireland; UCD CII received the Xiangqi International Promotion Award in 2016. Prof Wang hoped that the online tournament will bring joy to many xiangqi players amidst the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. He called all Confucius Institutes to be united in promoting xiangqi in Europe and North America.
Ms Meng Rong, Director of Confucius Institute in Quebec commended the tournament as a grand event of the overseas xiangqi circle as well as an important force in better promoting xiangqi overseas.
Mr Zhong Xue, Secretary General of the European Xiangqi Federation congratulated the event saying that Europe and North America are two major destinations of xiangqi promotion; this event not only provided an opportunity for xiangqi enthusiasts to meet and exchange skills, it also played an important role in promoting xiangqi and Chinese culture through the CI platform.
Special guests at the event included Consul Jiang Yu and Consul Huo Fuhai of the Chinese Consulate-General in Montreal; Mr Qinlin Zheng, Chairperson of the North American Xiangqi Federation; Sergej Korchiskij, Vice Chairperson of the European Xiangqi Federation and Chairperson of the Belarus Xiangqi Federation; Mr Wei Jiang, Executive Chairperson of the Quebec Xiangqi Federation and Mr Wei, Director of Confucius Institute in Coquitlam. The event received a congratulatory message from Mr Guoping Zhu, Vice Chair of the World Xiangqi Federation, Dean of the Chinese Chess Academy and Director of the Chess and Card Sports Management Centre of the State General Administration of Sport.