2023 SEA Games opening ceremony in Cambodia

PHNOM PENH: They arrived in large numbers, despite the oppressive heat and the promise of making history. On Friday, May 5, the 32nd Southeast Asian (SEA) Games were officially declared open in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, and the crowd that poured into the 60,000-seat Morodok Techo National Stadium was treated to a spectacle in a mood to party. The country is hosting the regional event for the first time. There will be 36 sports at the 32nd SEA Games in a number of cities, including Phnom Penh, the capital, Siem Reap, and Sihanoukville.

 Crowds waited patiently outside the sleek US$160 million stadium that was built and designed by Chinese companies hours before the opening ceremony began. According to previous announcements, all spectators will receive complimentary tickets to the Games. The territorial occasion will be held from May 5 to May 17, trailed by the twelfth ASEAN Para Games from Jun 3 to Jun 9. Indoor hockey, cricket, and football are among the sports that have already begun. Although the ceremony did not officially begin until 7 p.m. local time, there was unbridled enthusiasm throughout the evening. Treated to exhibitions by vocalists and nearby humorists, the crowd thundered their endorsement, excitedly setting off a progression of Mexican waves just in case. The stands were illuminated by fluorescent lights as the sky began to fall, illuminating the words "SEA Games" and "Cambodia 2023" across the sea of spectators. In participation for the Games' opening was Cambodian Head of the state Hun Sen, as well as a large group of visiting dignitaries including Laos President Thongloun Sisoulith and Singapore Public Olympic Committee director and Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin. Likewise in the stands was Worldwide Olympic Panel (IOC) VP Ng Ser Miang, who might later give the Cambodian chief a decoration for the benefit of IOC president Thomas Bach.

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