January 7 - Former Chinese diver Huang Qiang (pictured right) will represent Malaysia at the London 2012 Olympic Games, after the Chinese Swimming Association (CSA) and the International Aquatics Federation (FINA) gave him the green light to return to action at the Olympic test event next month.
Qiang has been coaching Malaysian divers since 2007 and can now return to competition for the country at the Aquatics Centre in London's Olympic Park from February 20 until 26.
Qiang will likely take to the pool alongside Ken Nee Yeoh or Bryan Nickson Lomas for the men's three metre synchronised springboard.
The diver was a former Chinese national champion and a two times World Cup winner.
He was given Malaysian citizenship last year, and said: "I have been waiting a long time to get the chance to represent Malaysia.
"I sent in my citizenship application a few years back.
"While waiting for the approval, I coached the team.
"After my application was approved last June, I started serious training.
"Even then, I was not sure whether I would get the chance to compete."
An Asian Games silver medallist at age 16 in 1998 and beating Russian diving legend Dmitri Sautin three times in 1999, Qiang was one of the strongest gold medal contenders for the 2000 Sydney Olympics, but a back injury cost him his chance and he had to withdraw from the squad just days before moving into the Olympic village.
Following the injury he turned to coaching.
But Qiang now hopes to finally clinch an Olympic medal.
"With everything settled now, I hope to get the chance to compete in the Olympics – if we get in, we stand a good chance to fight for a medal as there will only be eight pairs competing," he said.
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