China's volleyball superstar Zhu Ting has been featured in a UK children's book aimed at inspiring the next generation of athletes, earning her praise on Chinese social media.
Zhu, who was named MVP at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games as China won gold, features along with seven other household names in When I Grow Up: Sports Heroes published by British publishing house Dorling Kindersley.
The book, which is aimed at pre-schoolers, features US gymnastics star Simone Biles, Jamaican sprint champion Usain Bolt and Argentine footballer Lionel Messi on the cover.
Inside, Zhu is joined by US basketball giant Le Bron James, German tennis player Angelique Kerber, Japanese figure skater Yuzuru Hanyu and British Paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds.
The book tells the journey of each of the eight athletes from childhood to sporting success, illustrated by Lucy Semple, with Zhu's story mapping her path from "a tiny village in China" where she grew up in a family of farmers to winning Olympic gold as China's captain.
Commenters on a number of articles on internet portal Sina Sports praised the artwork and Zhu for being the only Chinese athlete to feature. One article referred to her as a "modern Mulan", referencing not only China's reverence for the pair but comparing the book to Disney's animated film Mulan released in 1998.
Zhu was also named MVP at the Rio Games, just as she was at the 2015 and 2019 World Cups, and has claimed 14 tournament MVP titles.
She won her latest in the 2019-2020 Chinese Super League where she helped Tianjin win the title after returning from being the world's best paid volleyball player at Vakifbank Istanbul to prepare for the Tokyo Olympic Games this summer.
Zhu was expected to lead the China team in their gold medal defence until the Games were postponed. China will still be considered favourites when the Games are scheduled at some point in 2021.
Copyright (c) 2020. South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.Artikel Asli