Chinese swimmer Xu Jiayu talking about his expectation at the Swimming Worlds on a training session in Beijing on July 8, 2019. (Xinhua/Li Ying)
BEIJING, July 8 (Xinhua) -- Olympic and world swimming champion Sun Yang leads a 43-member Chinese team at this month's FINA World Championships in Gwangju, South Korea.
Star swimmer Sun, who is currently training in Hong Kong, will take part in the 200m, 400m, 800m and 1,500m freestyle in what will be his seventh World Championships. He is the reigning world champion at both 200m and 400m.
Men's 100m backstroke world champion Xu Jiayu will show his strength in the 50m, 100m and 200m back, while Li Zhuhao will participate in the 100m and 200m butterfly.
"Of course I expect a good result at the worlds," said Xu. "But I don't know whether I can retain my title. I think if everything goes well, it is possible for me to win it again."
2012 double Olympic gold medal winner Ye Shiwen, who has been in good form in recent competitions, will seek glory in the women's 200m breaststroke and 200m and 400m individual medley.
Chinese swimmer Fu Yuanhui training in Beijing to prepare for the Swimming Worlds on July 8, 2019. (Xinhua/Li Ying)
Fu Yuanhui, who took a 50m backstroke silver at the 2017 Budapest worlds, is also in good form and will participate in the 50m and 100m backstroke.
"I am better than last year," said Fu. "This is my fourth World Championships and it is like meeting an old friend. I hope I can swim well and at least make the final."
The Chinese swimming team will leave for Gwangju on July 16. The 2019 World Championships open on July 13, while the swimming competition runs from July 21 to 28.