Back in the summer of 2018, everyone assumed that T. Zhu would be the one to lead the Chinese women’s volleyball team to a gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Instead, she was hobbled by a painful wrist injury that prevented her from playing to her potential, and the defending champions, China, were eliminated before the playoffs began.
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T. Zhu Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
According to Xinhua, some four months after the Games, the 26-year-old spiker has decided to finally do something about her chronic injury and get surgery.
“Everything is falling into place, from the pre-op conversations to the visa application. T. Zhu told the Chinese news agency that time would reveal the most accurate answer.
Since playing professional volleyball depends on my wrist’s ability to move freely, combat effectively, and maintain a flexible angle, my wrist’s therapy and recuperation regimens are significantly more involved than typical.
So I have to be very selective about the skilled physicians and targeted therapy approaches I use. The 26-year-old patient said she will undergo the surgery abroad, but she did not specify which country. “There are many things to ponder and plan,” she said, noting the impact of the epidemic.
China’s women’s volleyball team, coached by the legendary Lang Ping, placed a disappointing fifth in Pool B at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, losing to Turkey, the eventual gold medalist United States, and the Russian Olympic Committee. They beat Italy and Argentina, but not well enough to finish in the top four and move on to the knockout stage.
In 2017, while playing for VakifBank SK in Turkey (where she was at the time the highest paid player in the world), T. Zhu first experienced the injury. Because of the issue, she was unable to help her provincial team, Henan, at the National Games in September.
Recently, T. Zhu participated in a training camp for youngsters, where she heard retirement rumours. However, she is fighting back to full fitness and has shot down retirement chatter. To some Chinese fans, she represents everything that went wrong for China during the Olympics.
It is not just one of my aims, but also the mentality I should have as a professional athlete, that I will compete in the next two Olympics, T. Zhu was reported as saying.
“I don’t see any tension between coaching kids in my leisure time and playing volleyball professionally. My goal is to maintain my professional status for as long as feasible.