by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
To date Mu Zi has negotiated the initial stage of the Women’s Singles event; the next task will be on the evening of Tuesday 30th May when the first rounds of the Men’s Doubles, Women’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles events commence.
“My job is to produce an Olympic champion”, those were the words of Li Sun at the Press Conference prior to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.
He succeeded, Zhang Yining duly obliged but she is not the only player who has emerged an Olympic and World champion under the guidance of Li Sun. Wang Nan and Li Xiaoxia can be added to the list. It is a fact that undoubtedly influenced Liu Guoliang, the Head Coach of the Chinese Team.
“Having raised three grand slam champions, Li Sun is a very experienced and successful coach. He has been with the Women’s Team for several years. He is very familiar with our players and our opponents. At the same time, I will shift my working priority to Women’s Team as well.” Liu Guoliang
A notably absentee in the form of Kong Linghui but such is the reservoir of knowledge within the Chinese Table Tennis Association in every aspect, there in immense reservoir in which to refer.
“The team will not be too much affected; we are still in our own rhythm for preparation. We will focus on the match. I trust our strength, not only the players’ strength but also the coaching strength.” Liu Guoliang
Positive from Liu Guoliang; Li Sun is clearly relishing the opportunity to move to the top step.
“We will work as a team.” Li Sun
Working as a team and of course it is a strong team; very much at Li Sun’s right hand is Xiao Shan, the former coach of Zhang Jike, like those mentored by Li Sun, Olympic and World champion. Not a bad team!