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Liu Xiang eyes gold medal at Osaka athletics worlds
Latest Updated by 2007-05-10 10:53:29
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Men's 110 meters hurdles Olympic champion and world record holder Liu Xiang said here on Wednesday that his long-awaited gold medal at a world championships can come from Osaka this September.

Liu, who will compete in his fourth world championships, has won almost all major tournament gold medals except a world title. He said that the time is ripe for him now.

"I won a bronze at Paris in 2003, a silver two years ago in Helsinki. And this time, I think I can taste the gold medal because I feel I am in a very good form," Liu said.

Liu made his world championships debut in the 2001 edition in Edmonton, Canada, where the little known hurdler failed to qualify for the finals.

He rose to fame in the Athens Olympic Games as he took the gold medal in a world-record tying time of 12.91 seconds. The Shanghaier has become China's No. sports star since.

In the 2005 Helsinki worlds, the hot-favored Liu was beaten by France's Ladji Doucoure to the second place by mere a hundredth second.

Liu stunned the world last year, when he broke the world record with a time of 12.88 seconds in the Lausanne Grand Prix.

Liu's coach Sun Haiping is also confident that his disciple can win in Osaka.

"We'll try to win there," Sun said. "We are just back from a very successful winter training, which might be the best winter in the past three years. He has maintained a very good form. His time has always been kept around 13 seconds."

And most importantly, Osaka is a luck place for Liu, who just won his fourth successive Osaka Grand Prix title there in a time of 13.14 seconds.

Liu said Liu ran the slow time in Osaka because he did not have to run fast. "If he wanted, he was sure to run even faster. But there were no strong rivals there. He can easily run 13 seconds now."

Editor: Donald

By: Wang Zijiang and Xiao ChunfeiSource:China View website
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