Chinese athletes seek breakthrough at Beijing worlds

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, August 18, 2015
Adjust font size:

 Olympic champion Chen Ding eyes gold in men's 20km race walking at the upcoming world championships.

Chinese athletics team will seek breakthroughs at the upcoming world championships as they are inspired by the record-breaking swimming team.

China Monday unveiled the biggest ever squad for an athletics world championships as 69 athletes, including 30 men and 39 women will compete in 34 events at the tournament in the Chinese capital. The meet is slated for Aug. 22 to 30 in Beijing's iconic national stadium "Bird's Nest".

Medal hopes are pinned on men's and women's race walking, women's shot put and women's hammer throw.

"I hope the Chinese team can do better than last time in the 'Bird's Nest'," said Feng Shuyong, deputy director of Chinese Athletics Association.

Last time the Chinese athletics team competed in the national stadium in a major event, the capacity spectators witnessed defending Olympic champion Liu Xiang limped off the 110m hurdles track at the 2008 Games where China eventually collected just two bronzes.

"You have many advantages competing on home soil but there is also huge pressure. Last time Liu Xiang was over burdened with excessive expectations. I think this time the athletes won't be under as much pressure," said Feng.

As Russia withdrew most of its race walking team from the international competitions in the wake of a series of doping allegations, Feng saw a golden chance for China.

London Olympic champion Chen Ding and London bronze medalist Wang Zhen will vie for the men's 20km race title while Lyu Xiuzhi eyes the women's medal.

Two-time world championships medalist Gong Lijiao will again compete for a posistion on the podium in women's shot put.

Meanwhile, breakthroughs in men's jumping and sprint events are what the Chinese athletics is eagerly awaiting.

In the men's 100m, Su Bingtian is out of the reach of the podium but the Chinese will be as same pleased if he can better his own national record of 9.99 seconds after he became the first Chinese to break the 10 seconds barrier in May's Diamond League in the U.S..

Zhang Guowei, a rising star in men's high jumping, nailed the world second best of 2.38 meters this season and is looking to beat the 31-year-old national record of 2.39 set by Zhu Jiahua in 1984.

Zhu created China's best result in men's high jumping, a third-place finish in 1983 world championships.

"A department focusing on jumping, sprint and hurdles training was set up in 2012 and we can see rapid progress in the relevant events. What we lack now is breakthrough," Feng said.

"I have watched all the races of Chinese swimming team at the world championships. Their performance inspired me. Our team should learn from them," said Feng.

Chinese swimming team seized five gold medals, one silver and seven bronze in Kazan world championships which concluded on Aug. 9 while Ning Zetao stormed to the men's 100m freestyle title, becoming the first Asian to win the event at the world championships.

"I hope I can hear the national anthem in Beijing and see the national flag raised as many times as possible," he added.

Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from