The Southeast Asian Video games formally kicked off Thursday with a mask-optional opening ceremony in Vietnam’s capital, the primary main gathering within the nation for the reason that begin of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Regardless of the difficulties attributable to COVID-19, we’re right here at present as a logo of solidarity of the 11 Southeast Asian nations to beat all challenges,” Hanoi Mayor Chu Ngoc Anh stated in a speech.
Athletes from the 11 nations paraded and about 600 artists carried out conventional acts and dances in My Dinh nationwide stadium, which was full of about 20,000 spectators and officers.
The 2-week video games have drawn about 5,000 athletes competing in 40 sports activities, together with Olympics commonplace occasions in addition to conventional video games and martial arts common within the area, comparable to Vovinam and Muay Thai.
The biennial video games have been initially scheduled for final December however have been postponed on account of COVID-19.
Vietnam reopened in March, two years after its borders have been closed to curb the virus.
At a number of occasions which have already begun competitors, together with soccer and futsal, stands have been full of followers, giving a way of normalcy.
“I’m very excited concerning the SEA Video games,” stated Nguyen Duc Tung, a spectator on the opening ceremony. “It’s been a very long time since I’ve been in a position to watch and cheer at such a giant sporting occasion.”