19TH ASIAN GAMES
- Sunday, September 24th – Friday, September 29th (swimming)
- Hangzhou Olympic Sports Centre Aquatic Sports Arena, Hangzhou, China
- LCM (50m)
- Meet Central
The 19th Asian Games’ opening ceremony is in progress which is only feeding excitement for the types of match-ups we’ll be seeing in Hangzhou over the course of the next six days.
Representing the host nation, 29-year-old Wang Shun is one of the key athletes to watch in the men’s IM events, with the 29-year-old taking on both the 200m and 400m races.
Wang has been representing China in the IMs on the world stage for over a decade but it hasn’t always been smooth sailing.
At the 2012 Olympic Games in London, Wang was nursing a shoulder injury which rendered him out of the 200m IM final. A similar situation transpired at the 2014 Asian Games where he suddenly developed a fever before the race although he still captured the bronze medal.
He repeated a 2IM bronze medal performance at the 2016 Olympic Games and continued his momentum with gold in the event at the 2018 Asian Games.
His career came to a head at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, where Wang clocked a new Asian Record of 1:55.00 to beat out runners-up Duncan Scott of Great Britain (1:55.28) and Jeremy Desplanches of Switzerland (1:56.17).
Since that time, however, Wang has faltered, missing out on the final of both events at the 2022 World Championships as well as at this year’s edition in Fukuoka.
Speaking with Xinhuanet this week, Wang reflected on his career path thus far.
“I participated in the Olympics three times between the ages of 18 and 27, and during that time I went from being a young player to a veteran, and from being an unpopular athlete to breaking the Asian record.
“For most of that time, I was in the pool. Instead of going smoothly with the flow, we were pushing through rough waters.”
Wang continued, “The voices of dissatisfaction with myself from outsiders became louder and louder.
The reason I missed the gold medal every time was because I didn’t have the so-called ‘champion mindset’ to prove myself on the highest stage of sports competition.
“A lot of people told me I’d never be able to do it.” (Xinhuanet)
“Competitive sports are not like the flow of a calm river; the path is always full of trials and uncertainties, and it is only through constant effort that you can achieve your goals.”
Regarding those goals, Wang said of what he wants to get out of his performances this week in Hangzhou, “I just want to do what’s in front of me and think about getting a better result. My only goal is to stick to myself and give my all.”