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Chinese more rational toward Olympic golds: survey

Updated: 2015-04-10 11:26

Chinese more rational toward Olympic golds: survey

Liu Xiang with his gold medal after winning the 110m hurdles at the 11th IAAF World Athletics Championships on Aug 1, 2007 at the Nagai Stadium in Osaka, Japan. [Photo/CFP]

An online survey conducted by the newspaper China Youth Daily has found Chinese are less fanatical about Olympic gold medals, with nearly 95 percent of respondents saying it would be OK for China to get fewer golds or fall in the medal tally during future Olympic Games.

Asked about their feelings if China is to get fewer gold medals or see a dip in the medal tally in the 2016 and 2020 Summer Olympics, only 5.6 percent of respondents choose "I cannot accept", with 94.4 percent saying such a result would be acceptable. As many as 17.6 percent of those involved in the survey choose "I don't care at all as Olympic golds and the medal tally represent nothing."

Yi Jiandong, a renowned sports expert, told the paper the results show the majority of Chinese see a link between a nation's performance in competitive sports and its people's physical fitness. The country's sports cause remains crippled if its athletes gain more medals in competitive sports, but no progress is made in boosting people's fitness, it was added.

To Yi, the results signal a solid mandate for China to adjust its sports strategy and reform the sports sector.

The online survey, which was conducted in mid-March and canvassed 2,013 readers from all walks of life also indicated a diversified trend in sports viewing: people pay more attention to their favorite events rather than China's traditionally advantageous strong points.

Similar proportions of respondents, about 20 percent each, express interest in ping pong and badminton; track and field and swimming; soccer, basketball and volleyball; and their personal favorite events.

Nevertheless, more than 80 percent of those surveyed support China's national approach to athletic sports, with 74.3 percent voicing hope for improvements on the present system and only 14.8 percent saying it should be abolished.

Nearly 60 percent say athletes striving for gold medals represent China's comprehensive power and national image and should be encouraged, supported and learned from. However, 30 percent say Olympic gold medals are directly linked to the pursuit of personal gain by sports officials, coaches and athletes.

Besides, 69 percent of those surveyed say China's investment in athletic sports is worthwhile and 80 percent backed Beijing's attempt to jointly host the 2022 Winter Olympics with Zhangjiakou in North China's Hebei province. Most add that China should take the opportunity to improve its environment, transportation and industries.

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