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Team China

'Ice Queen' wields a cool cue

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'Ice Queen' wields a cool cue

 Pan Xiaoting smiles while waiting for a security check at the welcome center of the Asian Games Athletes' Village. Sun Xiaochen / China Daily


Pan Xiaoting, China's No 1 female billiards player, who claimed nine-ball gold at the Asiad, has been told she transforms from a fun-loving young lady to an "ice queen" when she picks up a cue.

"Friends tell me I become another person with a cold face when I start playing. I am not aware of it. Actually, I am a girl who smiles a lot and enjoys kidding with my friends," Pan said.

However, she concedes the ice-cool faade works in her favor at the table.

"Billiards is actually a mental competition, which requires great concentration. If you want to win, you have to take it seriously. You have to respect the game and your opponent," she said.

Chou Chieh-yu, the Chinese Taipei player who lost to Pan, 7-5, in the nine-ball gold medal match, agrees.

"She always concentrates 100 percent in games and remains calm. It's hard to keep mentally stable in close games. But she did it (in the final on Nov 19) and that's why she won," said Chou.

Pan's tense facial expressions often carry on after the game and sometimes make her look like the loser due to her forced smile in front of the cameras.

Apart from cue sports, which have brought her fame, Pan enjoys the same things as other young women, such as karaoke and cosmetics.

The day after the Chinese billiards team checked into the Athletes' Village, Pan and her teammates found the karaoke room in the international zone and enjoyed a hearty session of singing. Her favorite singer is Faye Wong.

Pan, 28, has been hailed as the most beautiful female billiards player in China, but she just shrugs off the mantle.

"I know how to keep my skin healthy. I have tried many different brands of cosmetics. No matter which you prefer, removing and cleaning are the most important (parts of the process)," she said, volunteering some skin-care tips.

"Chemicals in some cosmetics can harm your skin, so make sure you take it all off before you go to sleep," said Pan.

She is also emerging as a successful businesswoman with a chain of billiards clubs all over the country. The 17th and newest club opened in Shanghai just before the Asian Games started.

"Although they are named 'Pan Xiaoting Billiards Clubs', the business is operated by my father and an experienced team. I provide suggestions on design and promotional activities," said Pan.

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