Here is what Igor Mazurenko, President of PAL, told us about his visit to China:
In 2008, the People’s Republic of China showed the world that its leadership took the development of various sports disciplines very seriously. For obvious reasons, the emphasis was on Olympic sports. The 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, for which the Chinese government did not limit resources, gave not only a strong impetus for the development of sports in the country, but also secured a respectful attitude to the development of sports by local authorities. Professionals, former champions and world champions, who know the problems and goals of the sports industry like no one else, have come to the Sports Affairs Committees. Over the past 10 years, huge changes have occurred in China, which today open up great opportunities for non-Olympic sports such as armwrestling. We were convinced of this during our visit.
All these years our sport has been developing thanks to the efforts of enthusiasts. And so, first of all, I would like to thank the D1 team for the invitation, the mega-productive schedule of our work and for the sincere love for our sport.
The D1 group, today, is the leader in the number and quality of armwrestling competitions held by it. Despite partial informational isolation, these enthusiasts are aware of everything that is happening in the world armwrestling today, invest all their finances and all their energy in our sport and see their future in armwrestling. In this we have a lot in common.
We held talks on cooperation, outlined steps to work on a joint agreement.
The plans of the group D1 - holding an unprecedented in scale "China Open” armwrestling tournament. I believe that this event can be compared at least with the entrance of armwrestling to the Olympic Games. The fact is that the brand “China Open” is officially state-owned in China and in order to use it, you need to obtain a government license. There is already a tournament with the same name in the country, but in another sport discipline - tennis. Tennis tournament “China Open” is the largest tournament in the world and its prize fund only is 10 000 000 US dollars.
The delegation of PAL and D1 met with the State Committee on Extreme Sports and with the team of the Organizer of the tennis “China Open” and enlisted their support in obtaining a license and organizing a “China Open” tournament in armwrestling.
PAL, as an international project partner, will provide for this event all its organizational, marketing and media infrastructure and technologies. We are honored to be a part of this process.
Along with the “China Open” project, the State Committee approved the creation of the Chinese Arm Wrestling Association.
Following the visit, the necessary documents are now being prepared for signing an agreement between the D1 group and PAL on large-scale cooperation in the areas of event management, media production and educational programs for Chinese athletes.
In addition, a preliminary agreement has been reached for China to join the Unified Rating of Professional Armwrestling, which will open up new opportunities for tens of thousands of Chinese professional athletes on the world stage.
As for amateur athletes, already this year, we will see the Chinese team at the World Championships in Poland and I am sure that it will make tangible corrections to the current picture of the world armwrestling.
Traditionally, an arm wrestling seminar was held for Chinese athletes and I can say that the enthusiasm I saw in their eyes leaves me in no doubt about the brilliant future of Chinese armwrestling.