By Bridget O’Donnell
Nicolas Anelka during a March game against CSL champion Guangdong Evergrande.
With the China Super League season in full bloom and Olympic trials on the horizon, here are some of the most interesting sports stories coming out of China this weekend:
- Despite signing Chelsea superstar Nicolas Anelka, Shanghai Shenhua aren’t impressing too many fans with their current 11th place CSL standing. Shenhua tied 12th place Hangzhou at the Zhejiang Yellow Dragon Sports Center on Friday.
- Meanwhile, China continued to live up to its notoriously poor international football record at the AFC Champions League last week. Not a single Chinese team managed to win a game, including last year’s CSL champions Guangzhou Evergrande.
- Swimmer Zhang Lin, the silver medalist of the 400m freestyle at the 2008 Olympics, may miss out on the London Games after a poor performance at nationals this weekend. Zhang failed to make it to the finals for the 400 free and placed a disappointing seventh place in the 200m free. His coach blames the bad performance on an asthma attack.
- Ma Qinghua is set to be China’s first Formula One driver after signing with HRT last Thursday. The 24-year-old driver said in a statement, “It’s a very special moment for me.”