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Zhang Yining Prepares to Leave China to Study in United States of America
She is to commence a degree in Sports Education at Wisconsin University, in the United States of America.
Currently she is learning English at a university language school in Beijing to prepare for overseas education and explained that progress was smooth having made many new friends in her classes.
Discussions on essay writing and research have been to the fore.
Several years ago, when she was still a professional player, Zhang Yining once said that she wished to live the life of a normal person.
Now, she has achieved that dream as a student, experiencing what every student does in daily life.
Zhang Yining plans to be in the United States for about 10 months.
She wants to improve her English and hopes that by living in the United States, constant exposure to the language will help her speak English fluently.
Also she wants to better understand the history and geography of America, as geography is her favourite subject; whilst at the same time, introducing table tennis to the citizens of America.
She has no definitive plans after her education in the United States is over.
Asia One News – Saturday 2nd April 2011
Chinese table tennis legend Zhang Yining calls it quits
Chinese table tennis legend Zhang Yining announced her retirement in Beijing Thursday afternoon as she left for the United States to further her studies, sports.qq.com reported.
The ace paddler confirmed she quit from the table before she boarded the plane at Beijing airport, saying that she would focus on her major in Physical Education during the one-year's study in the US.
"I made the decision (to retire) after careful consideration and I wish to give young players more opportunity," said Zhang during the brief interview.
With four Olympic gold medals, nine World Championships and four World Cup wins, Zhang was considered one of the greatest female players in the history of the sport.
Due to Zhang quitting, she will miss the 2012 London Olympic Games, raising the question of who can step in as her successor.
Guo Yue, Guo Yan, Li Xiaoxia Liu Shiwen and Ding Ning are all potential player that may take the lead in the Chinese women's table tennis team, but none match the achievements of Zhang Yining.
Guo, 23, was once regarded as China's best female player after Zhang, but she had been in depression since the Moscow World Championships. She just lost to her teammate Mu Zi in early March at a trial event crucial to qualify for the 2011 Rotterdam World Championship.