Tibetan commentary brings World Cup alive for Tibetan soccer fans

2018-07-16 09:49:00 | From:Xinhua

Tenzin Draje, a soccer fan in Lhasa, southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, is extremely excited to stay up late on Sunday night to watch the final of the 2018 World Cup.

This year, the World Cup experience for him and for many other Tibetan soccer enthusiasts was more special, because it was the first time that the games have been broadcast with live commentary in their mother tongue.

Starting from the match between Uruguay and Saudi Arabia on June 20, Tibet TV has broadcast the World Cup with live Tibetan commentary.

"In the past, many soccer fans in my village couldn't fully understand the game because we can't speak Mandarin very well. With the Tibetan commentary, now we can pick up many soccer terms and better understand the game," said Phuntsog, from Gangba Village in southern Tibet.

Tashi Dondrup, a commentator with Tibet TV, has done a lot of preparation to ensure the success of the live broadcasts.

To keep the viewers better informed during the matches, he carefully learned soccer terms and collected detailed information about the teams and players before every match.

"When the players quarrel on the pitch or miss a shot, I explain what they are saying and tell the viewers in Tibetan. This will bring the game alive for the viewers," he said.

Professional soccer referees have also been invited as Tashi Dondrup's co-commentators to help the viewers understand soccer terms and better appreciate the game. The commentators have captivated the viewers with soccer knowledge and humorous improvisations throughout the tournament.

News about the Tibetan commentary went viral among Tibetan soccer fans. According to Tibet TV's official WeChat account, articles on the Tibetan commentary have garnered over 50,000 clicks, while those on Tibetan soccer terms have seen more than 13,000 clicks.

Tibet TV, which was founded in 1985, was authorized by China Central Television, the official broadcaster of the 2018 World Cup, to broadcast the tournament. To ensure the quality of the live broadcasts, Tibet TV established a team of over 100 people to work on the project.

"This is the first time that Tibet TV has broadcast a top-level international sports event with Tibetan commentary," said Phurbu, director of the team. "It marks a crucial step for the establishment of a Tibetan live broadcasting team at Tibet TV."

Phurbu hopes that in the future Tibetan commentary can be expanded to billiards, basketball, and other sports loved by Tibetan people.

Soccer was introduced into Tibet in the early 20th century and has become widely popular in the region since then. According to the regional sports bureau, the sport has seen fast development in Tibet in recent years, with soccer matches at all levels organized every year.

At the end of 2016, local authorities rolled out a program to further promote the development of soccer in Tibet, especially in schools.

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