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Meet me at Liu Xiang station

03-31-2012 15:12 BJT

With the London Olympics drawing near, 13 Chinese Olympic champions are among those chosen to represent station names on a souvenir map of the underground.

"We chose our Olympic legends by sport not by country, so the Chinese athletes on the map are there because they are leading representatives of their events worldwide," former BBC sports editor Alex Trickett told China Daily.

Included on the Olympic Legends Map are hurdler Liu Xiang (Bayswater station), weightlifter Liu Chunhong (Crystal Palace) and badminton player Lin Dan (South Acton).

"Given China's success in table tennis and badminton, it stands to reason that they are strongly represented in those sports," he said.

Designed by Trickett and sports historian David Brooks, the map is sold on Transport for London's website for 4.99 pounds ($8) as a poster 61 cm by 91 cm.

Sales will continue until after the Games.

Although Liu had to withdraw from the 2008 Olympic Games due to injury, he was included "for his historic hurdling feats in 2004", Trickett explained.

But Chinese basketball star Yao Ming misses out.

"Though an excellent basketball player, Yao never won a gold medal at the Olympics and was up against many other great Olympic champions like Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson," he said.

Wang Jing, who works in an IT company in London, said he searched excitedly for Chinese Olympic medalists when he learned about the map.

"I believe the Chinese athletes used in the map are all famous in China and are good representatives," he said, although he is concerned that many foreigners will not recognize many Chinese athletes' names, "just like I don't know many medalists from other countries."

Views from London's commuters, however, are divided.

Caroline Bach, a community center manager from Harrow, northwest London, also said that she will not buy the map because "it is a pride of living in London to know the existing stations' names so well."

Jesus Silver, a nurse in Wellington Hospital, north London, said that he is upset that no athletes were chosen from Portugal, his country of origin.

Maximillian Mathis, a machine technician from Germany on holiday in London, said it took him a while to recognize German athletes on the map.

"It will be much easier if each line represents athletes from a different country," he said.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: China Daily

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