The table tennis player with Chinese origins represents Luxembourg at the Olympic Games.
Xia Lian Ni is the dean of Team Lëtzebuerg. She was born 4 July 1963 in Shanghai, China, and won her first laurels, on behalf of China, during the World Table Tennis Championships (in 1983).
In 1989, Xia Lian Ni moved to Germany and then moved to Luxembourg two years later. Since 1991 she has been representing Luxembourg in international competition. Thus, she won the title of European Champion twice, in 1998 and 2002. In 2001 she was elected Luxembourg's sportswoman of the year. She is three-time Olympian – Sydney in 2000, Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012.
Today, she lives in Ettelbruck with her husband and two children.
Since 1988, table tennis has been an Olympic sport. From 2008, the table tennis program has included four different competitions: singles – women and men – and team events for men and women respectively. The competitions are held in rounds and each match is eliminatory.
The popularity of table tennis in China can be said to be at the basis of the domination of Chinese athletes on the medals scoreboard: of the 28 gold medals that have been awarded since 1988, 24 were won by China.
Table tennis in Luxembourg
Table tennis enjoys much popularity in Luxembourg: There are over 80 clubs across the country. Two Luxembourg table tennis players are currently a member of the elite part of the National Olympic and Sports Committee (COSL): Xia Lian Ni and Sarah de Nutte. Both athletes have competed in the Olympics under the flag of Luxembourg. Table tennis is represented in Luxembourg by the Luxembourg Federation of Table Tennis (FLTT).