Table tennis player Chuang Chih-yuan (莊智淵) has agreed to return to the national team and compete at the Tokyo Summer Olympic this year, the Sports Administration said yesterday.
The four-time Olympic athlete in September last year announced that he would leave the national team, as he would be unable to accumulate enough points to qualify for the Olympics after withdrawing from the Asian Table Tennis Championships and the Paraguay Open.
After the September announcement, the Sports Administration and Chinese Taipei Table Tennis Association (CTTTA) said they spent three months trying to change his mind, and on Wednesday, Sports Administration Director-General Kao Chin-hsung (高俊雄), CTTTA Chairman Lin Mao-rong (林茂榮) and Taiwan Cooperative Bank chairman Lei Chung-dar (雷仲達) went to Kaohsiung to meet with Chuang and his mother.
Photo courtesy of the Sports Administration
“I was the president of National Taiwan Sport University when his wife was a student there,” Kao said. “Because of this connection, we had a rather pleasant talk yesterday morning. He was also happy because he just became a father and was busy taking care of his baby in the past few months.”
“Even though Chuang has not been under an intensive training lately, he should have no problem returning to the national team given his extensive experience,” he said.
Chuang would lead the team at the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Team Qualification Tournament in Portugal from Jan. 22 to Jan. 26.
Winning the tournament is crucial to ensure the men’s and women’s teams, which are ranked globally as No. 5 and No. 3 respectively, qualify for the Olympics, where there are only nine spots, the Sports Administration said.
They leave for pretournament training in Portugal on Friday and Saturday next week.
At the end of last year, table tennis players Lin Yun-ju (林昀儒) and Cheng I-ching (鄭怡靜) secured the Olympic qualification in mixed doubles after winning the ITTF World Tour in China’s Changzhou City.
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday urged Beijing to respect the median line of the Taiwan Strait by immediately stopping its military intimidation of Taiwan, as such actions would only hurt the feelings of Taiwanese. Beijing should immediately stop making military provocations against Taiwan, Ma wrote on Facebook after Chinese warplanes in the past week have made numerous forays across the median line that divides the Taiwan Strait. Although it has never officially acknowledged the median line, Beijing used to respect it, Ma said in response to comments on Monday by Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌), who said
IDENTITY: The time is right to press on with a referendum, as the nation has heightened visibility and support in the global community, the Taiwan United Nations Alliance said The Taiwan United Nations Alliance yesterday said that it is considering launching a petition for a referendum proposal to have the nation join the UN under the name “Taiwan.” Alliance chairman Twu Shiing-jer (涂醒哲) was joined at a news conference in Taipei by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Huang Hsiu-fang (黃秀芳) and leaders of the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan and civic organizations. They said that it is the right time for a petition because Taiwan’s visibility on the world stage has increased, as it has been praised for its success in containing its COVID-19 outbreak and for helping other countries by sharing
An advertisement displayed in the corridor of the underground Taipei City Mall has caused contention online with social media users saying that it depicts Taiwanese bears as servants of Chinese pandas. The advertisement — which imitates the style of an ancient Chinese painting, but replaces people with bears — shows a scene in imperial China, with Formosan black bears laboring, while pandas relax and enjoy beverages. “The development of the tourism industry is important, but this type of targeted advertising is extremely disrespectful — and it makes people uncomfortable,” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei City Councilor Chen E-jun (陳怡君) said. The advertisement, under