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Liu Xiang Most Popular Athlete in China
    2007-05-14 09:55:32     CRIENGLISH.com
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World number one hurdler Liu Xiang has been crowned China's most popular athlete and player of the year.

At an awards ceremony for China's top ten athletes in central China's Changsha on Saturday, Liu Xiang won the two awards for his outstanding achievements in 2006, especially setting a new world record of 12"88 seconds for the men's 100m hurdles at Lausanne.

Liu Xiang's coach, Sun Haiping, also scooped the best coach award.

Gymnastics world champion Yang Wei and snooker legend Ding Junhui are some of the other athletes who have won best player awards, while Houston Rockets center Yao Ming is the second most popular athlete after Liu Xiang.

Gymnastics star Cheng Fei has won the top award among female athletes. Her perfect performance in the vault and floor exercise events at last year's world gymnastics championships helped China beat the defending champions, the US, and seize its first women's team world title.

Veteran ping pong player Wang Nan, badminton star Xie Xingfang and up-and-coming speed skater Wang Meng are also honored with womens awards.

Figure skating team Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo are named the best sports pair, while Huang Yubin, Li Yongbo and Liu Guoliang have received awards for outstanding coaching.



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