For Xu Jiayu, FINA is a test, but Olympics is the ultimate goal

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-08 21:31:51|Editor: Shi Yinglun
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BEIJING, July 8 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese national swimming team will be hunting for medals at the FINA World Championship Gangju 2019, but one swimmer has his eyes set on another prize.

"Instead of focusing on my opponents, I will endeavor to make myself stronger. My final goal is the Olympic Games, after all," said Xu Jiayu, who retained his title as the world champion in the men's 100-meter backstroke match in an open training course on July 8.

In 2017, Xu bagged a gold medal in the men's 100-meter backstroke final in the World Championship, making him the first-ever male gold medalist in the backstroke program in the history of China's presence in this world-class swimming game.

"I have no idea whether I can defend my title, but I will do it to the best of my ability. Now my training preparation is on a good track, and I hope I can see a smooth battle with a successful match," the swimming star said after the victory.

In the backstroke match, he will meet several strong opponents including Ryan Murphy and Mitch Larkin. "It is better for me to concern myself about my physical state (rather than other factors)," Xu remarked.

This is his fourth journey to the World Championship. "If I can keep a good state of mind, I think I can do a better job."

"My coach said there is no pressure for you, because FINA worlds is a small test while your ultimate objective is to win in the Olympic Games. Indeed, every competition and course training I now participate in sets the stage for the Olympics. I hope I can deliver a better result at the Olympics," Xu said.