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China can’t decide whether swimming star Sun Yang is in the doghouse or not.
Sun spent a week in detention last month after being caught driving without a license. He didn’t make many friends on the inside after insisting on a vegetarian diet to avoid the risk of eating contaminated meat: Prison rules dictate that all inmates must eat the same meals.
There was talk at the time that Sun might be banned from competition for more than a year, but Shang Xiutang, deputy head of the Chinese Swimming Administrative Center, now says he could resume training “soon.”
This should come as no surprise. Sun is the best swimmer China has ever produced, and having just celebrated his 22nd birthday, still has his best years to come, a frightening thought given that he has already won two Olympic and five World Championship gold medals.
There was no way China’s swimming authorities would keep Sun out in the cold for too long, especially with next year’s Asian Games coming into view, and Sun appears to be getting special treatment, though not always in a good way.