China-Japan gymnasts train together in Tokyo to gear up for 2020 Olympics

Source: Xinhua| 2019-02-13 23:44:06|Editor: yan
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by Xinhua writers Ye Shan, Deng Min

TOKYO, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Visiting Chinese gymnasts said Wednesday that joint training with their Japanese counterparts in Tokyo offers a precious opportunity for the two countries to exchange and learn from each other, as well as to warm up for the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.

The 17-member Chinese men's gymnastic team arrived in Tokyo on Monday afternoon for a one-week joint training session with the Japanese team. This is the second time they train together as the Japanese team went to Beijing in late January.

On the Media Day on Wednesday, athletes from the two countries trained together at the Ajinomono National Training Center, in events including horizontal and parallel bars, pommel horse, vault and floor exercise.

"I think the joint training between China and Japan is a good start, and it is good for the two countries to improve the exchange of training and learn from each other," the Chinese team's coach Wang Hongwei said in an interview.

Speaking of what the team has learned so far, Wang said that they have gained a lot by getting familiar with the equipment to be used in the Tokyo Olympics, learning about the diet in Tokyo and trying Japanese food, as well as visiting the venues and the Olympic village.

Zou Jingyuan, winner of the men's parallel bars at the 2017 worlds and the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, said that he hopes to warm up for the Tokyo Olympics in the joint training session, and he hopes they will defend the team title at this year's World Gymnastics Championships (WGC).

He said he is looking forward to training with the Japanese team again in the future. "As the Olympic Games will be in Tokyo, I hope I can come to Tokyo to learn more and get familiar with the environment, then at the Olympic Games everything will not be strange anymore."

The Japanese team spoke highly of the Chinese team, and said they would make full use of the opportunity to learn from the Chinese side.

"I am focusing my attention on Zou Jingyuan and Xiao Ruoteng. They are the champion of Qatar WGC and the world champion in Individual All-Around. It is hard for athletes to surpass their achievements. I want to see what kind of training they have done to get to this level," Japanese Olympic champion Uchimura Kohei said.

"(The Chinese team) pays a lot of attention to the basics and trains very carefully, which I think is a distinct characteristic of the team," Japan's coach Hisashi Mizushima said. "This is the characteristic that makes the Chinese team very strong."