Li Ting will not retire due to bad form according to the Chinese
The CTA has rejected mounting speculation that Athens women's
doubles gold medalist Li Ting will shortly be ending her career,
despite Sina.com reports this week that she was granted permission
to retire on her fourth request.
The top tennis body stated she was merely off recovering from
injuries and working on her form.
"Li will be quitting the national team for some time but she is
not going to retire," said spokeswoman Xie Miqing. "She is still an
Olympic member and also a potential competitor at the Beijing
"We are allowing her time to adjust her form and recover from
injuries before letting her take back her place in the national
Li, 26, is receiving medical treatment for an injured waist.
The CTA already persuaded Li Ting after she announced her wish
to wrap up her career after the Tenth National Games in 2005,
showing the larger sway the Chinese body has over its players than
its foreign counterparts do.
Li and Sun Tiantian grabbed China's first Olympic tennis gold in
2004, but her form has never been the same since. Li won just one
title last year before losing in the semi-finals at the Doha Asian
Games. The doubles specialists were split up last month to give the
team opportunities to experiment with the best possible pairings
ahead of the Beijing Olympics.
Li Na, now 16th in the WTA Tour singles rankings, Peng Shuai, Li
Ting, Sun Tiantian and youngsters Sun Shengnan and Ji Chunmei are
testing different partnerships at WTA events.
The three Olympic pairs will be finalized in June, when the new
Olympic Points System takes effect.
However, the new rotation has not helped Li Ting, who stands at
a lowly 2-9 this season partnered with Ji.
(China Daily February 16, 2007)