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Friday, 31 May, 2002, 10:58 GMT 11:58 UK
China's Qi is fit again
Qi Hong has given China a boost by announcing that he'll be fit for the World Cup
China's Qi Hong is nicknamed 'the ghost'
China midfielder Qi Hong gave his team-mates a much-needed World Cup fillip on Friday when he returned to training.

Qi said he was hoping to play a key part in China's World Cup campaign, which gets underway against Costa Rica on 4 June.

"I am very excited," said Qi, who is known as the Ghost for his ability to get in the opposition's penalty area.

"It has been a while since I took part in the national team training and it is frustrating to watch my team-mates go through the regime while I jog around them."

There had been suggestions that Qi - who forms China's midfield axis with star Li Tie - might not be ready for China's opening game on Tuesday.

"Me being eager to get back onto the pitch is an understatement," he said.

"The training went well and I hope I will remain injury free until the World Cup is over.

"The team were happy to see me back and I can tell that they were really happy for me."


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GROUP C
  P GD PTS
BRAZIL 3 +8 9
TURKEY 3 +2 4
COSTA RICA 3 -1 4
CHINA 3 -9 0

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