Champion in five consecutive Paralympic Games, winner of 98 gold medals in domestic and overseas competitions and the 100th gold medal winner of Paralympic Games in China’s history in 2004 — such a legend can only be Zhang Xiaoling, now 62 years old.
Not surprisingly, she has been playing ping pong since she was young.
Zhang Xiaoling trains before a competition. [Tianjin Daily]
Zhang has loved to play ping pong since childhood. Unfortunately, she broke her right leg, and since it was not treated in time, two years later it developed bone necrosis. Her leg had to be amputated so as to save her life. The unfortunateness broke her ping pong dreams.
In 1984, China’s first National Games for the Disabled was held in Hefei, capital city of Anhui Province, which brought hope to her again. At that time, she was 27 years old and been a disabled athlete participating in all the national games for the disabled since the second session. She was a witness of the development of China's sports sector for the disabled.
"It is not easy for a country to train a disabled athlete. If I can, I want to always stand on the field, and inspire more disabled people to take part in the sports," she said.
(Source: China Women's News / Translated and edited by Women of China)
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