Archive for opening

Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games began and it marked the fifth time Australia is hosting the games.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , on April 5, 2018 by vincentloy

I realized that there is going to be a lot of international sporting events this year. We have seen the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at South Korea two months ago. Now, we came into the period of the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Later on, we would observe FIFA World Cup in June and July at Russia, Asian Games at Palembang (Indonesia) in August and September and also the Summer Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires at Argentina in October. So many sports to look out for in this year alone.

The 21st Commonwealth Games, Gold Coast 2018 began yesterday in a glitzy opening ceremony held in Carrara Stadium. The games will be held from 4th to 15th April 2018 in Gold Coast, a city famous for beautiful beaches in Queensland, Australia. This is the fifth time that Australia is hosting the games. The last time Australia hosted the Commonwealth Games is on 2006 in Melbourne (12 years ago). I have to admit that the Melbourne 2006 games was much more grander (more spectacular ceremonies) but Gold Coast 2018 also didn’t disappoint with an opening ceremony that shines a light on the aboriginal people of Australia and also presenting the diverse culture and beautiful nature of the country.

The games is officially opened by Prince Charles on behalf of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II. He is joined by his wife, Camillia and Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia. There will be 275 events in 19 sports available in this games which saw 71 participating teams representing the various countries and territories which were once under the reign of British empire. My country, Malaysia has a pretty good record in this games and its capital, Kuala Lumpur has also hosted the games once in 1998. It would be nice if Kuala Lumpur has the chance of hosting it again in near future. In the first day of the games (today), Malaysia has already won one gold medal.

I only watched the highlights of the opening ceremony and I realized that there is no cauldron lighting (a tradition observed in other events like the Olympics) but rather a segment where the Queen’s Baton Relay ends with a message from the Queen read by Prince Charles in the ceremony to officiate the games. Typical with the other recent ceremonies, Gold Coast 2018 emphasizes on vibrant and colourful light projection in its opening ceremony. There is no specific ‘shockingly majestic’ moment in the ceremony but it is still a success considering the recent games’ objective (including other games like the Olympics, Asian Games, etc) to minimize the budget and scale of events to prevent the host from running into deficit and ‘white elephant’ issues to the venues.

Now, I wish all the best to the athletes (especially the Malaysian athletes that I’m supporting). In the previous edition (Glasgow 2014), Malaysia won 6 golds, 7 silvers and 6 bronzes for a 12th place finish in the overall medal tally. I think Malaysia will perform slightly better in this edition and let’s hope that it will break into the top 10 spot this time.

(Images in this post are from The Guardian. More images here: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/gallery/2018/apr/04/commonwealth-games-2018-opening-ceremony-in-pictures)

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Pyeongchang 2018 kicks off with eye-catching opening ceremony.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 10, 2018 by vincentloy

Pyeongchang 2018, the XXIII Olympic Winter Games is held from 9 to 25 February 2018 (some events being held on 8th and 9th prior to the opening ceremony). This international sporting event brought Pyeongchang, a once quiet town 180km from the capital Seoul, South Korea into spotlight. The games feature 102 events in fifteen sports disciplines. 2,952 athletes from 92 National Olympic Committees are slated to compete, including the debut of Ecuador, Eritrea, Kosovo, Malaysia, Nigeria and Singapore.

Wow…I can’t wait to see how Malaysia will perform in this Winter Olympic Games. I don’t think Malaysia will win any medal since this is only the first time Malaysia is participating in Winter Olympics. We have only two athletes competing (Jeffrey Webb will compete in alpine skiing while Julian Yee will compete in figure skating). Although we have lack of experience (hard to get involved in any winter sports in Malaysia where no winter is observed), but I’m still wishing all the best to these two Malaysian athletes in Pyeongchang 2018.

Pyeongchang defeated Munich (Germany) and Annecy (France) back in 2011 to bid for the hosting job of the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. Previously, Pyeongchang had bid to host the 2010 and 2014 editions but lost out respectively to Vancouver and Sochi (Vancouver hosted the 2010 Winter Olympics while Sochi hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics). Success is finally observed in the third time bidding. Third time a charm for Pyeongchang.

The opening ceremony was held yesterday’s evening at the Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium, a stadium with 35 000 seating capacity purposely built for the games and will be demolished after the games ended. The Games were officially opened by President of the Republic of Korea Moon Jae-in and the ceremony was also attended by Kim Yo-jong (representative of North Korea and sister of Kim Jong Un), Mike Pence (Vice President of USA), Shinzo Abe (Japanese Prime Minister), Antonio Guterres (United Nations Secretary General), Thomas Bach (President of International Olympic Committee), etc.

I didn’t watch the full ceremony but I do looked at the highlights of it from many news sources. Some of the major highlights of the ceremony include the marching of North and South Korea together in the athletes’ parade under a unified Korean flag, two men impersonating as Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un in the stadium and being kicked out, the world’s largest drone show in history during a performance segment of the ceremony, etc.

(Images in this post are from Vox at https://www.vox.com/2018/2/9/16995150/2018-winter-olympics-opening-ceremony-photos) 

29th SEA Games Kuala Lumpur 2017 opens with surprisingly good opening ceremony!

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2017 by vincentloy

The 29th South East Asian (SEA) Games Kuala Lumpur 2017 has officially opened with a magnificent opening ceremony held just now in Bukit Jalil National Stadium. I am not in Malaysia but I am glad to be able to watch the ceremony live just now from YouTube. It began on 8.17pm (20:17 time for this year of 2017). I didn’t have high expectation of the ceremony, as you know, it is Malaysia. I remembered that our opening ceremony for 1998 Commonwealth Games was nothing exciting and I don’t even remember a single moment from the ceremony in 2001 when we last hosted this SEA Games.

Then, I am left surprised. The opening ceremony just now was actually good. Not to the point that it was incredible or out of this world, but it is still a great show. We of course cannot compare this to Olympic-level ceremonies. This is considered breathtaking at SEA Games level. The ceremony is short (just two hours) and I’m fine with it. The official speeches were short (good too). The first half of the ceremony is dedicated for all the official procedures like flags parade, athletes parade, and oaths taking. Then, came the second part that I’m looking forward to which is the performance segment.

I’m surprised that the role of the creative director is given to a Chinese this time. Cool. That’s a wise decision. I’m not intending to be racist here but giving major role to a Chinese in Malaysia is a very seldom occasion. Give us a chance and we will deliver. And he (forgot his name) delivered. I’m amazed by his ability to combine the traditional shows with contemporary elements for the performances. It’s hard to do that and he accomplished it. I can still experience the unique diversity of Malaysia (and ASEAN overall) through traditional dances and outfits, but at the same time, listening to vibrant modern music and seeing high-tech colourful lighting and projection all around. The choreography and synchronisation aren’t at the best but the effort is there. The presentation appeared to be like a mess for a time but overall, the energy was there.

Before watching the show, I have fear that the ceremony will be overwhelmed with very traditional dances and songs. I’m now certainly in relief. The songs during the performance are also great and complements to the energetic atmosphere of the almost fully-packed stadium. As for the stadium, I love the newly refurbished stadium. It looks awesome with the new skin cladding and modern LED lights. A major disappointment of the ceremony would be the cauldron. It’s just a huge chunk of cylinder mimicking ‘oil lamp’ (the broadcaster said so). That part is supposed to be intense and exciting. The end result is not. Lack of effort on this crucial part of the ceremony. And I don’t even know the last torch bearer. Apology but who is she? The last torch bearer is supposed to be someone who is the most excellent in world sports. By the way, where is our beloved Datuk Lee Chong Wei? He is not appearing at all in this ceremony. He is the best choice for that spot.

Last but not least, the concluding fireworks is awesome although I wish for more. Generally, the ceremony is great and is a good effort but it lacks ‘wow’ moment. There literally isn’t any ‘wow’ moment in the show. All the ‘suspended in the air’ show in the ceremony fall short of excitement too. The idea of having LED lights installed at the side of audiences’ seats reminds me of the same situation for London 2012 ceremonies. Well, I’m fine for this idea to be reused again to make the show better. Now, the games begin and we will see if Malaysia could reach its target by winning over 111 golds and topping the medal tally. The games will end with a closing ceremony on 30th August 2017, which is coincidentally the eve of the country’s 60th anniversary of independence celebration.

(Images in this post are from The Star Online and YouTube screenshots)

Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games officially began with a splendid opening ceremony.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2016 by vincentloy

I purposely woke up before 7am this morning to watch the live broadcast of the opening ceremony of the 31st Summer Olympic Games, Rio 2016. The ceremony which took about four hours in Maracana Stadium, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil saw attendance of over 78 000 spectators and also audiences from around the world watching from television or from the internet. This is the first time the Summer Olympiad is held in South America.

Before the start of the games, the organizers had mentioned that they would spend very little on the ceremonies due to the financial crisis of their country in recent years. And because of that, I have very little expectation since this kind of ceremonies should not be taken lightly as it is a very strong platform to showcase the best of the host nation that can offer and present to the world. But in the end, I still insist to watch the opening ceremony to see what they can do with limited budget. And surprisingly, the outcome is that I’m quite impressed with the opening ceremony that had just concluded an hour ago.

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While it is expected that the organizers would still be depending on light projection on the floor for most part of the performances’ segment, the ceremony also shined from some very creative concepts presented. The first presentation that led to the countdown to mark the commencement of the opening ceremony was a bit of a letdown when there is no connection between the 10-second timing display to the performers on the stage. Fortunately, things get better soon with brilliant presentation to display the history and the multicultural state of Brazil. However, I find that the performances’ segment was a bit too short and the parade of nations kicked in so fast.

Over 200 countries are participating in this games and this is the first time a team for the Refugee is created to compete in Olympics. Not to forget to compliment Brazil to have this ceremony as a platform to create awareness on climate change and global warming issues. Even the Olympic rings were presented from artificial trees and they are all green (of course) which also coincides with the main colour of Brazilian flag. As for the Olympic flame arrival and cauldron lighting section, it’s a bit underwhelmed because it was done like without much thought (my impression was ‘like that only?) and I also find the animated mechanism behind the floating cauldron a bit awkward eventhough it still looks beautiful. The fireworks display at the end from the stadium was also a bit plain.

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Rio de Janeiro did delivered a grand and fabulous opening ceremony and I’m quite amazed of how they can do this with small budget (it doesn’t look cheap at all). However, it could not match the greatness we have seen from London 2012 (lesser ‘wow’ but very meaningful and touching) and of course the Beijing 2008 (full of ‘wow’ and grand). This Rio 2016 opening ceremony still delivered some ‘wow’ factors but appeared less energetic and vibrant despite all the iconic and colourful Brazilian costumes and dances. So now the Rio 2016 games has officially begins and will continue till 21st August 2016. There will be over 2 weeks of intense and interesting competitions from various sports to watch, contested by the best of the athletes from across the world.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

It’s all about Rio 2016 for this month.

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 1, 2016 by vincentloy

It’s the first day of the month and it’s also the official first day of my second semester. Well, there is no class for me on every Monday and so, I will be only start to attend class from tomorrow onward. But I have already had a site visit yesterday for my design studio this semester already which means that my time has already to be dedicated for this second semester. I’m looking forward to this second semester and I hope I can also do well just like what I have done for my first semester, or even better if possible. I’m also anticipating the end of this semester so that I can fly back to Malaysia by end of November or early December. Haha…it’s a bit too quick to think about that right now when this semester has just started.

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So, my holiday is gone and there comes four months of stress and heavy workloads from all the assignments and classes. Slowly, I think I would start missing the past month when all I do everyday is just by sleeping, eating, and surfing internet. I also don’t think there can be any more time for afternoon nap from now onward. I have to get the bad habit away, turn off my lazy mode and have to work hard and smart to deal with this semester and also two more in next year before the course’s completion and my graduation.

The 31st Summer Olympic Games is finally going to take place this month. The world’s biggest multi-sport event that happens once in every four years is a global event watched by all sporting fans around the globe. This 31st edition is scheduled to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from 5th to 21st August 2016. The opening ceremony is going to be held on this Friday, 5th August on 8pm Brazil time. If I’m going to watch the live broadcast of the ceremony, I have to wake up very early on Saturday’s morning due to the world’s different time zone which is not too bad this time. I remember I purposely stay awake till midnight four years ago to watch the live broadcast of the opening ceremony for the London 2012 games. I was the only one in the living room watching the ceremony as I’m the only one in my family who have an interest on it. Can’t believe that was four years ago. Time flies.

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(Seen above is the new Barra Olympic Park for Rio 2016. The main stadium that will host some sporting events and also the opening and closing ceremonies is Maracana Stadium, is not located in this Olympic Park. That is odd since it is usually the main stadium will be the centerpiece of any Olympic Parks in the past.)

I didn’t have high expectation for this edition’s ceremonies due to the very low budget allocated on it and also low expectation to the overall games due to the many problems surrounding the host city this time. Brazil is facing economical instability, Zika virus, massive underdeveloped places, high security and safety risks, etc. But I believe Rio de Janeiro will compensate a bit with beautiful natural setting like the magnificent beaches and hills, more developed urban areas, newly constructed facilities and venues, etc. All I’m wishing for in this games is to see Lee Chong Wei to win Malaysia’s first ever Olympic gold medal this time in badminton. It’s his last chance, and I will elaborate later on this point if he managed to get into the final.

August 2016 Blog Header

In conjunction with the 31st Olympiad this month, Rio 2016, my blog header of the month would be also highlighting on this sporting event. Nobody would have not heard of Olympics. It’s the event that bring best athletes from across the world together to compete in various sports contested. It’s the event that the world will be putting the eyes on. It’s the event all sport fans love, even the ordinary people like me too who doesn’t really like sport much but still love to watch some intense sporting competitions. The visual for the header (from this original source: https://iso.500px.com/rio-de-janeiro-photos/) is a striking aerial view of the host city, Rio de Janeiro with the iconic Christ the Redeemer Statue overlooking the picturesque city. The image is superimposed with the official logo of the Rio 2016 to signify the games. How fortunate iit is for Rio de Janeiro to be chosen as the host city of such prestigious event.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Less than a month left to Rio 2016.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 7, 2016 by vincentloy

The Olympics is returning soon. The world’s biggest sporting event, the Summer Olympic Games which is held once in every four years, will be back this year. The 31st Olympiad which will be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from 5th to 21st of August 2016 is now less than a month away. The time to catch up to some great competitions in sports from world-class athletes will be returning soon. If you didn’t know, after this Rio 2016, the next Summer Olympics will be Tokyo 2020.

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I can’t believe that London 2012 had already occurred four years ago. Time flies. I still remember I purposely woke up on midnight to watch the live broadcast of its opening ceremony alone in the living room. The ceremony was not as great as the one we saw in Beijing 2008 but was still memorable with some catchy scores and humors. Not many people like to watch this kind of ceremonies because many may find them boring and too long, but I do because I like to feel the excitement of an event that signal the beginning of an international games through breathtaking performances, impressive stadium and fireworks.

However, I didn’t have any high expectation towards the ceremonies for Rio 2016. It’s because the organizers had only allocated a shockingly little amount of money towards these ceremonies that will have over 1 billion audiences. They even stressed out that there wouldn’t be any costly presentation of technologies like light shows and they will only focus on the basics to present the Brazilian culture to the world. In the current time when technology is a must for shows, it will be a letdown seeing only ‘basics’ in opening ceremony especially for this world’s largest sporting event. But I will still want to try to watch the opening ceremony ‘live’ and I’m expecting the performances will be focusing more on highlighting Brazilian famous ‘carnivals’ with all the colourful dances. But I’m not that interested on this. Similarly to London 2012’s ceremonies which were below my expectation due to them being more of a musical shows than a real majestic ceremonies like what Beijing 2008 did, I think Rio 2016 will be more or less like London 2012. I think will be even worse than that. Beijing 2008’s ceremonies were still the best ever I had seen.

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Brazil also didn’t have a smooth time in these 7 years of preparation for the Olympics with negative issues like delay in construction of new sport venues for the games, corruption, weakening economy, harsh treatment to move people away from the new Olympic zones, Zika virus, security instability, etc. I just hope that the games will just run smooth without any major letdown. I didn’t really wish for Rio de Janeiro to host the games from the very beginning. It’s a beautiful city but I think there is many other cities out there that are more outstanding than Rio to host Olympics.

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Nevertheless, I wish all the best for Rio 2016 which will be now only less than a month away. I’m excited to watch some great competitions. I’m looking forward to support my Malaysian athletes especially in badminton. Let’s hope that our Dato Lee Chong Wei can finally win the country’s first ever gold medal this time after having won only two Olympic silver medals in the past. Also let’s put our hope on some other athletes to deliver. Hmm…it would be nice if the games is held earlier, for example like right now, as I have all the free time now to watch the games. By next month when the games started, my semester has also started.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

28th SEA Games officially opened yesterday at Singapore.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 6, 2015 by vincentloy

The 28th SEA (South East Asian) Games officially opened yesterday on 5th June 2015 at the new National Stadium with Singapore being the host nation. It is a biennial (held once every two years) multi-sport event involving participants from the current 11 countries of Southeast Asia region (Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, Brunei, Philippines, Timor-Leste). The current 28th edition of the games started few days earlier (from 29th May) and will end with a closing ceremony on 16th June 2015.

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I didn’t know that its opening ceremony was on yesterday. I always thought it will be on this evening. Fortunately, Youtube provided the complete video of the ceremony and I watched a major portion of it this afternoon. The ceremony that took a little over two hours was impressively done but it wasn’t anything that I’m considering unforgettable. However, it’s only South East Asian Games, and not bigger ones like Asian Games or Olympic Games. Hence, it is already an amazing ceremony based on SEA Games standard.

Here are some of the beautiful photographs of the opening ceremony:

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My brief opinions of the ceremony;

1. The fireworks were good. But it would be better if there are also fireworks from the city.

2. The performances depend too much on the lighting projection on the floor. I knew it is beautiful, but it minimizes the opportunities for many great acts that performers can do on their part.

3. Some sequences were too slow and draggy. That’s why I skipped some part of the ceremony when I watched it this afternoon.

4. The design of the torch is too simple. But its cauldron in DNA form is interesting. Parts of the show based on DNA theme is also interesting.

5. The stadium and its surrounding are beautiful!…

The new National Stadium of Singapore where the opening ceremony was held forms the major part of the new Singapore Sports Hub, a complex of multiple sporting venues in one place at Kallang. The national stadium of maximum 55 000 capacity has a dome and a retractable roof, hence it can be an outdoor or an indoor venue. It’s a beautiful stadium in the beautiful city of Singapore.

Let’s hope that our Malaysian athletes will perform very well in this SEA Games. And do you know that Malaysia will be hosting the next edition of this games. It will be Kuala Lumpur 2017. However, I’m wishing that Malaysia should aims bigger and try to bid for the hosting job of larger games like Asian Games or even Olympic Games in near future.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)