On the afternoon of June 7th, a small event to commemorate the 1975 China-US Women’s friendship basketball match was held by D.C. Women’s professional football team D.C. Divas at half time of its game against Boston Militia at Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex. Those who were invited to the event included a delegation from the Chinese Embassy led by Counselor Zha Liyou along with Ms. Albrette Ransom, a member of the Federal City College (now the University of the District of Columbia) Pantherettes Women’s basketball team that took part in the 1975 China-US Women’s basketball match. Hundreds of local Americans watched the game.
Before the game, Counselor Zha and Ms. Ransom were recognized as honorary Captains and kicked off the game.
At halftime, D.C. Divas announced a statement in recognition of the 1975 China-US Women’s friendship basketball match, which was jointly drafted by D.C. Divas and members of the Federal City College team. The main content of the statement was as follows: the Federal City College women’s basketball team felt honored to play the match against the Chinese Women’s Basketball Team in 1975 and witnessed this historic diplomatic event; this year marks the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relationship between the US and China and 30th anniversary of the sister city relationship between D.C. and Beijing; over the past 30 years and more, active and mutually beneficial exchanges have been conducted in education, economy and trade, culture and sports between our two countries as well as two capitals. We hold this commemorative event today to pay tribute to those pioneers who contributed to bilateral friendly relations between our two countries then.
During the second half of the game, “U.S. Sports Radio” in Arlington (VA), which was live broadcasting the game, announced the statement of recognition again and briefly interviewed Counselor Zha and Ms. Ransom about the 1975 China-US Women’s basketball friendship match.
Counselor Zha said in the interview that this commemorative ceremony, initiated and facilitated by local community, is a vivid example showing the foundation of a friendly China-US relationship lies in our two peoples.
In November 1975, the Chinese Women’s Basketball Team visited the US at the invitation of the National Committee on US-China Relations and the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women and played five friendship matches against five American women’s basketball teams, including US National Team, respectively in five cities of Los Angeles (CA), Memphis (TN), Rochester (NY), New York City and College Park (MD). This occasion occurred prior to President Ford’s trip to China, creating a good atmosphere for his visit and the continuous efforts made by the two sides for the normalization of China-US relations, registered as one of China’s important sports diplomacy events.