Games given two thumbs up

Updated: 2008-09-18 09:46


International Paralympic Committee (IPC) president Philip Craven Wednesday praised the Beijing Paralympics for its quality.

He said he had received a very positive feedback.

"The Games has been great. I think everybody realizes that," Craven said at a press conference in the Main Press Center before the closing ceremony.

"I have just had breakfast at the Swiss Hotel and people have been coming up and saying congratulations or giving me the thumbs up," he said.

Craven said the Beijing Paralympics had attracted historic high media coverage and attention from around the world, and more athletes had competed than ever before.

"We had more media coverage, more broadcasts, and the IPC Youtube channels had more than 1.1 million visitors, the closing ceremony will attract even more," he said.

A total of 5,500 journalists covered the Games, with more than 1,100 hours of broadcasts. IPC's two online TV channels ParalympicSport.TV and, offered free viewing up to eight hours a day.

The Athens Paralympics four years ago attracted about 3,000 journalists with 617 hours of broadcasts.

Craven said he was also proud of the record number of athletes that participated.

A total of 4,032 athletes from 147 countries and regions competed in 20 events. Athens attracted 3,806 athletes from 136 countries and had 19 events.

The high attendance rate was another source of satisfaction for Craven. The National Stadium, known as the "Bird's Nest", was packed to capacity for most events.

"When a Chinese athlete won the T11 5,000 m event earlier in the Games, 90,000 people in the stadium cheered," he said.

Zhang Zhen won the men's T11 5,000 m on Sept 9.

BOCOG, organizers of the Beijing Olympics and Paralympics, said both Games had attracted more than 1 million spectators to the various venues.

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