13 Jan 2017

Staged in Düsseldorf from Monday 29th May to Monday 5th June, the Liebherr 2017 World Championships is the first global event in what can be termed the next Olympic Cycle.

Players gather in the German city to compete for the coveted title of World champion; it is very much in 2017 the focus for China.

by Henry Chen

A strong sense of competition for places, an abundance of talent and an effective systematic training scheme; these are the assets that make China the benchmark for all other teams.

Over a decade ago at the Volkswagen 2005 World Championships, the Chinese Team swept all before them; since that time nothing much has changed. They are still very much the indestructible force; the unsurmountable obstacle.

Now this year, led by the head coach Liu Guoliang; China prepares to give another superb performance in Dusseldorf.

“The current goal of the team is to prepare for the Liebherr 2017 World Championships”, Liu Guoliang

Part of the Chinese Team’s preparations is a series of squad trials which aids the coaching staff to objectively select their line-up for big competitions like the World Championships. It is expected be held on a date close to the competition proper and it will be intense.

“If they want to participate in the selection process then, they have to play at world-class level. Since we want our players to adjust their condition really well, we plan to hold the squad trials on a date close to the competition”, Liu Guoliang

Does this mean a relatively new line-up from the Chinese Team? It is possible, according to the head coach; as long as the young players can take on the pressure.

“The team will be giving opportunities to young players. The five players who will be selected for the competition are no doubt the contenders for the main Olympic line-up in Tokyo. So, this year’s squad trials will be more intense than ever”, Liu Guoliang

Fierce competition is expected in the selection process; Fan Zhendong and Liang Jingkun are both driven by a strong sense of ambition. Both gained confidence and momentum from their performances in the recent Chinese Super League; whilst Fan Zhendong also won the Liebherr Men’s World Cup.

Now is it feasible that such players could in fact pose a challenge to the two most recent Olympic champions.

“Ma Long and Zhang Jike will be facing a huge challenge in this new cycle”, Liu Guoliang

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