China to send top swim stars for Singapore leg of World Cup

China will field a strong slate of Olympic and Asian Games medallists for next month's Fina Swimming World Cup presented by Yakult in Singapore.

Leading the charge for the Chinese will be Li Zhuhao. The 19-year-old's battle with Singapore's Olympic champion Joseph Schooling in the 100m butterfly is expected to be a highlight of the meet.

Li had won two silvers (2014 and this year) in the event at the Asian Games. Both times, Schooling won the gold medal.

At last year's Fina Swimming World Cup in Singapore, Li was runner-up in the short-course event to South Africa's Chad le Clos.

Another Chinese star who is aiming to make a splash at the OCBC Aquatic Centre from Nov 15-17 is 20-year-old Zhang Yufei.

She won the 200m fly gold and 100m fly silver at the Asiad in Jakarta.

Spearheading China's contingent in Singapore will be the highly decorated Ye Shiwen. The 22-year-old won two golds (200m and 400m individual medley) at the 2012 London Olympics as a 16-year-old but has since failed to make the podium at three world championships and the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

The last stop of the nine-leg Fina Swimming World Cup series, which boasts a total prize purse of US$2.5 million (S$3.45 million), will also feature the likes of Olympic medallists Emily Seebohm (Australia) and Russians Vladimir Morozov and Yulia Efimova.

The host nation will be represented by Asian Games 50m breaststroke silver medallist Roanne Ho, long-distance specialist Glen Lim and 16-year-old Jonathan Tan, who anchored the 4x200m freestyle team to an Asiad gold in August.

This will be the 12th year that the Republic will be hosting the event.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 25, 2018, with the headline 'China to send top swim stars for S'pore leg of World Cup'. Print Edition | Subscribe