Tue, 14 Jul 2020

BEIJING, May 29 (Xinhua) -- Xu Limin, head coach of Chinese women's basketball team, says his team is mentally stronger in preparation for the postponed 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

"We have stayed together for two months, working on improving our weakness, especially some fundamentals," Xu said here on Friday, "We trained six hours per day, sometimes we held scrimmages, or invited the men's team of Beijing Sports University to play training matches with us."

The team returned to China in early March after they had qualified for the Tokyo Olympics, where they would train in isolation at Beijing Sport University instead of their familiar training base at the General Administration of Sport.

The 54-year-old revealed that they had even held reading parties and calligraphy competitions to help the players grow stronger mentally. According to Xu, he and his team are looking forward to playing at the Olympics next summer, when they will be physically and mentally stronger.

Looking back on his team's Olympic qualification journey, where they had to play 'home' games in the Serbian capital of Belgrade rather than on their usual home court in Foshan, Xu said: "The coronavirus outbreak changed everything. At that time, the team was very young and under huge pressure; however, we managed to find a way to turn disadvantages into advantages, so the whole qualification journey had a special meaning for us."

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