Duke Kunshan University lined up against old and new rivals in the first of a series of competitive sports tournaments bringing together joint-venture universities in China.
The inaugural Qilin Cup saw Duke Kunshan, East China Normal University (ECNU), the University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC) and hosts New York University Shanghai (NYUSH) competing in basketball, table tennis, football, volleyball, badminton and tennis on Oct. 28-29.
Nine teams of about 130 student-athletes in total represented DKU at the tournament, with the footballers emerging as the star performers.
The men’s football team won two of their three matches to finish joint-first with ECNU. The women also chalked up two wins in their competition, but were runners-up to the unbeaten NYUSH.
DKU’s other top-two finish came in the basketball, with the women finishing just behind ECNU.
The event was held as part of a new DKU, NYUSH and UNNC initiative to run regular competitive tournaments between themselves and other universities in the area, including joint-venture institutions.
“This Sino-foreign university sports cooperative is a great opportunity to showcase the power of sport in an intercultural setting, and use it to enhance our students’ experience at DKU,” said Director of DKU Athletics Dr. Zarko Krkeljas. “We are excited to partner with NYUSH and UNNC to create this initiative.”
Krkeljas added, “I am proud of our teams, not only for their impressive results that are improving with each tournament, but also — and most importantly — for their display of sportsmanship, respect and teamwork at all times, and as such being true ambassadors for DKU values.”
Duke Kunshan is set to host its invitational tournament on Dec. 2-3 at its stunning state-of-the-art Sports Complex, pitting five universities against each other in as many sports.
At least two other tournaments involving joint-venture universities are planned for the rest of the 2023/24 academic year, with UNNC and Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University expected to hold their events in March and April.
Qilin Cup results at a glance:
Men’s Football: 1st (joint)
Women’s Football: 2nd
Women’s Basketball: 2nd
Men’s Volleyball: 3rd
Table Tennis: 3rd
Men’s Basketball: 4th
Women’s Volleyball: 4th