TIANJIN, China, September 13. JUST call it the Sun Yang effect from now on at domestic events in China. The country, which has never had an Olympic hero the likes of Sun, who won four medals including two golds this summer at the 2012 London Olympics, has stirred up some controversy according to reporting by Sina.
Sina has reported that a blogger made various claims regarding Sun's potential diva status at the Chinese University Games this weekend after which Sun called a press conference to respond to the accusations.
The blogger stated that Sun requested that morning prelims be rescheduled until later in the day instead of 8:30 a.m., threatening to withdraw from the meet. The blogger also stated that Sun insisted that he be accompanied by his bodyguards and his mother, who is acting as his agent, when going into the men's locker room. Additionally, the blogger accused Sun's mother of becoming very impatient with a scrum of reporters surrounding Sun everywhere he went, going as far as hitting a few of them and striking a reporter's camera with a water bottle as she attempted to block all reporters other than those from CCTV. The blogger also questioned the use of two new cars being used exclusively for Sun's transport.
The blogger later deleted the post, stating that he had just quoted another web site. Sun and his mother, however, felt the need to answer the allegations. Sun, while speaking at a press conference he convened, would not speak specifically about any specific accusation, only saying “My mom did what she did for my own good.”
The next day, Sun's mother spoke out. She denied that Sun had ever demanded a change to the competition schedule, and explained that Sun can hardly sit down to have a meal without being swarmed by the media. She also clarified that the two new cars being used to transport Sun this week belong to their friends, and were not arranged by meet organizers. She did not, however, deny the allegations of striking reporters, or their equipment.
Meet organizers have since put a six-reporter rule in place for approaching athletes while on deck.
Special thanks to contributor Christopher Chow for translating Sina's report