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By Sportswriter Zhang Han

 

BEIJING nike air max 2017 cuir femme soldes , Dec. 21 (Xinhua) -- China, boasting breakthroughs at Vancouver Winter Olympics, is facing new challenges to keep heading up, while the Sochi Games are around the corner in just seven weeks.

 

China spent more than 20 years longing for its first Winter Olympic gold since making debut in the Games in 1980, but didnot end the draught until the Salt Lake City Games in 2002 when Yang Yang took two short track speedskating titles.

 

In the Turin Games in 2006, China again claimed two golds, from the women's short track and the men's freestyle aerials.

 

Another four years later in Vancouver nike air max 2017 cuir femme , the largest ever 90-strong Chinese delegation, competing in 10 sports with also the most berths, made historic breakthrough by collecting five golds plus two silvers and four bronzes, sharing the seventh place in the medal tally with Sweden, the first top-eight finish.

 

With Sochi 2014 slated on Feb. 7-23 in the black sea resort town of Russia, it could be an uphill battle for the summer sports powerhouses to further improve in winter sports, as most of their superior events are featuring aging veterans and few new faces.

 

Last month in Italy's Torino and Russia's Kolomna nike air max 2017 cuir soldes , meritorious coach Li Yan's squad, who made a clean sweep in four women's short track events in Vancouver 2010, managed average results in the third and fourth World Cups of the 2013-2014 season, but ensured 20 berths to the pending Winter Games, the toplimit that a team could have reached. The only other team that claimed as many tickets as they can are the long established winter sports crack forces Canada.

 

China, however, have to keep betting on the 29-year-old star skater Wang Meng nike air max 2017 cuir , as the four-time Olympic champion came out the biggest contributor for the Olympic berths by winning the women's 500m in both Torino and Kolomna before adding a women's 3,000m relay title in the latter.

 

Wang, the first Chinese to win three golds at one single Winter Games four years ago, suffered ups and downs in the past three years. She had been expelled from the Chinese national team in 2011 for punching team manager after breaking the team rules and returning to the team base drunk. However, she stormed back with immediate victories after a 13-month suspension.

 

"We should lower our expectations from Wang," admitted Li Yan in a recent interview. "She's almost 30 years old and is heading out for her fouth Olympic campaign. It won't be easy for her physically and mentally."

 

"It gets tougher for me to compete in high-level races and to quickly recover," echoed Wang. "But I'll go all out in Sochi and help my younger teammates make progress."

 

The same problem is also challenging other events that China once held edges. The 1-2 finish in the pairs figure skating are hard to repeat after Shen XueZhao Hongbo retired nike air max 2017 bleu homme soldes , and the Chinese women's curling team, led by the same skipper Wang Bingyu who won the 2009 world champions and the bronze medal in Vancouver 2010, only managed their Sochi 2014 appearance through the final Olympic qualifications in Fuessen, Germany last week.

 

The Chinese men's curling team has already qualified for Russia by virtue of a sixth-place finish at the world championship in April.

 

China's figure skaters will attend all four events in Sochi 2014 for the first time since the 1988 Winter Games in Calgary, Canada, namingly women's, men's and pairs figure skating and ice dancing. The country's stronghold of pairs nike air max 2017 bleu homme , however, will firstly miss one spot out of the toppest three due to poor performance in the 2013 worlds.

 

Vancouver pairs runners-up Pang QingTong Jian will lead the field for China's figure skating team, while the 2006 Turin Games silver medalists Zhang Hao and his new partner Peng Cheng, this season's Cup of China champion Yan Han, promising star in growing pains Li Zijun, her teenage teammate Zhang Kexin and ice dancers Huang XintongZheng Xun are the most possible choices of persons to complete the squad.

 

Li Ni'na, an Olympic silver medalist and a favorite for two previous Winter Games nike air max 2017 bleu , is another medal hopeful for China, who narrowly missed golds in the freestyle aerials four years ago. The three-time Olympian, already 30 years old, just declared her comeback from knee injury with a World Cup title last week.

 

"We aim on seizing four women's and four men's freestyle aerials spots for February's Sochi Winter Games through the coming World Cups," said Yan Xiaojuan, an official of China's winter sports administrative center.

 

The Chinese were contented with a silver and a bronze from Li Ni'na and Guo Xinxin in the women's category as well as a bronze from Liu Zhongqing in the men's in Vancouver.

 

Apart from biathlon, of which China have spotted five Olympic berths nike air max 2017 blanche et noir , the Chinese skiiers are still working hard to earn spots by taking part in as many as possible point-collecting events of freestyle and other skiing sports like snowboard, Alpine skiing, and cross-country.

 

DUSHANBE, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- Tajikistan opened their Asian Games football campaign Sunday in Incheon, South Korea with a 1-0 win over Group C rivals Singapore, Football Federation of Tajikistan (FFT) said on Monday.

 

According to FFT, Tajik centre-back Siyovush Asrorov scored in the 87th minute the winning goal against Singapore at the Ansan Wa Stadium.

 

Tajikistan' s U23 team nike air max 2017 blanche et grise , coached by Muhsin Muhammadiev, will face Palestine in its next fixture in Hwaseong Stadium on Wednesday.

 

Hwaseong Stadium, part of the Hwaseong Sports Complex, is a multi-use stadium in Hwaseong, South Korea. Completed in 2011, it is used mostly for football matches.

 

By Matthew Rusling

 

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