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Chinese taekwondo team eyes at least one gold
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The Chinese taekwondo team has vowed to add at least one gold to China's medal tally.

China will send four players to the Games, namely Chen Zhong in the women's over 67kg category, Wu Jingyu in the women's 49kg division, Liu Xiaobo in the men's over 80kg class, and Zhu Guo in the men's 80kg division.

The team has started a 100-day training camp to improve their strategy and techniques.

"We will focus on the details of training," said Chen Liren, head coach of the national team.

As the Chinese men's team lacks strength in vying for any gold, the hope is mainly laid on the two female players.

Two-time Olympic champion Chen Zhong, who will compete in the women's over 67kg category, is determined to defend her honor again in front of the home crowd.

"As everybody anticipates, I hope to defend the title at the Olympics. And now I'm trying to achieve this goal with a detailed training plan," Chen said.

Chen, 26, claimed her first Olympic title in the 2000 Sydney Games, when taekwondo was included into the Olympics for the first time.

Although Chen was expected as having absolute dominance in her division, she remained cautious for the upcoming competition.

"Every player in the Olympic arena will be my opponent as they are all selected from national elites. For me, I will treat every match seriously just as the final."

World champion Wu Jingyu is another gold medal hope for the Chinese team.

With lightening kicks and great explosive power, the 21-year-old has the potential to strike gold at her first Olympics.

The Chinese team dropped Athens gold medalist Luo Wei, who has been suffering an injury to her left leg.

However, unlike Chen, Wu faces fierce competition in the women's featherweight from Chinese Taipei and Thailand. She was recently defeated by Chinese Taipei's Yang Shu-chun at the Asian Championships.

"The loss won't hurt my mood," Wu said. "I am quite confident."

(Xinhua News Agency July 20, 2008)

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