But he proved again that once he walks onto the clay court, he is the man to beat.
"It is good news that we are getting back on the pitch to do what we love most. Personally, I cannot wait to show our fans the great sport that they have been missing for so long. However, the excitement should not make us forget that COVID-19 is still out there," he said.
In Thursday's only other fixture, Athletico Paranaense were held to a goalless home draw by Ceara. Enditem
"The players will have several days off after the league ends. Then we will have the first training session at Xianghe national training center near Beijing, mainly for recovery. The second phase will be a one-month camp focusing on honing techniques and tactics. In the third phase, we will warm up on home turf for the game," he said.
"When I started my career I didn't imagine or dream of being part of a fourth qualifying tournament. For me it's a source of pride. I'm enjoying it to the fullest, in the knowledge that my career is drawing closer to an end."
Xi'an, home to the Terra-Cotta Warriors and Horses, attracted 30,000 runners from 30 countries and regions to participate in its third marathon edition in 2019.
Though a late race safety car period bunched the pack up and caused several drivers to complain that their tyres were becoming too cold, Hamilton was never truly threatened as he crossed the line for his landmark win.
This year's race, which was originally expected to attract 38,000 runners, saw the cancelation of general public entries due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Around 200 elite runners and wheelchair racers took part in the competition held on March 1.
Uruguay will host Chile on Thursday and then go on to play in Ecuador on October 13. Enditem
Du, who is also deputy minister of China's State General Administration of Sport, noted that the goal of the tournament is to promote the development of youth football in China.
Hebei is still winless going into the season. Guo finished with a game-high 31 points. Chen Jinting and Ma Wen added 15 and 13 respectively.