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28 Jul 2014
YOG , IOC News , Nanjing 2014 , Press Release

A “slam dunk” for the Youth Olympic Games! IOC announces Yao Ming as Ambassador

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today announced Yao Ming as the latest Ambassador for this summer’s 2nd Youth Olympic Games (YOG) taking place in Nanjing, China.

The Chinese basketball legend will share his advice and experience of international competition with the next generation of young athletes, while inspiring young people around the world to get active and embrace the Olympic values.

Yao Ming is no stranger to the Olympic Games having competed at the 2008 Beijing Games, where he scored the first basket of the tournament in his home nation, a moment which he described as “the proudest of my career”. A popular athlete in China, Yao Ming has also enjoyed success further afield after spending the majority of his career within the illustrious NBA.

Yao Ming will attend the Nanjing YOG, interact with athletes and take in some of the competition, including basketball, which features at the YOG in its 3x3 format. In the spirit of the Youth Olympic Games, this concept was launched to appeal to young audiences and is played in an urban venue. 

The IOC chooses Ambassadors for each edition of the Youth Olympic Games to help spread word of the event and inspire young people to get active and enjoy sport. Sports stars Chad le Clos and Michelle Wie have also been chosen as Ambassadors for Nanjing 2014. Previous Ambassadors include Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps and Yelena Isinbaeva. The campaign is shared with the 43.5 million fans on the IOC’s various social media channels.

The second edition of the Youth Olympic Games will take place in Nanjing, China from 16 to 28 August 2014. The programme will feature the 28 sports on the Olympic programme, including rugby and golf. Nanjing will also showcase exciting new formats and innovations such as mixed-team and mixed-country events. Off the field of play, athletes will be encouraged to take part in a unique programme of activities and workshops, including sessions on healthy eating, injury prevention, the dangers of doping and illegal betting, careers in sport and media training.

Fans can watch the Youth Olympic Games live via and


The International Olympic Committee is a not-for-profit independent international organisation made up of volunteers, which is committed to building a better world through sport. It redistributes more than 90 per cent of its income to the wider sporting movement, helping athletes and sports organisations at all levels around the world.


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