China’s star hurdler Liu Xiang plays down competing at 2015 worlds

 

 

Photo taken on February 3, 2015 shows China’s star hurdler Liu Xiang (3rd from right) attending 

the 200-day countdown activity for the 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing slated 

for August 22-30.   Photos by Li Ming

 

 

 

BEIJING  |  2015-02-03 15:09:33

 

China’s star hurdler Liu Xiang

plays down competing at 2015 worlds

 

 

By Wu Junkuan

 

 

Liu Xiang shines at the press conference.    Photo by Li Ming

 

Chinese star hurdler Liu Xiang played down the expectation for him to compete at the 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing slated for August 22-30 as the organizers launched 200-day countdown here on Tuesday of February 3.

“I really want to compete at the World Championships, especially on my home soil, but the chances for me to compete in Beijing seem to be very limited. I will try to find other ways to join the Beijing worlds,” said the 31-year-old, who was presented by the organizers as one of the seven promoting ambassadors for the tournament.

Liu underwent surgery in London after he limped out of the men’s 110m hurdles for the second consecutive Olympics with a ruptured Achilles tendon in 2012 and is yet to return to competition following more than two years of rehabilitation.

Fans and Chinese media have speculated that Liu will return to the track and compete at the Beijing worlds, but the former world and Olympic champion chose to stay low-profiled although he did not rule out the opportunity to run in Beijing.

“I have competed in five editions of World Championships, in 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2011 respectively. Through these competitions I have grown from a rookie hurdler into a world champion,” Liu said.

“As a veteran I feel proud to see the World Championships to be held in China. And I will definitely be part of the World Championships no matter in what way.”

The 2015 IAAF World Championships will be held in Beijing’s National Stadium, known as the “Bird’s Nest”, which hosted the opening and closing ceremonies as well as the athletics events of the 2008 Olympic Games.

The last time Liu compete in the “Bird’s Nest” was not a sweet memory for him as the Athens Olympic champion pulled out of the Games with an aggravated Achilles tendon injury. Four months later, he underwent a foot surgery in the United States and had four calcium deposits removed from his right foot.

 

 

Liu Xiang receives interviews before the press conference.   Photo by Li Ming

 

 

 

 

 

 

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