China's female marathon runner Zhou Chunxiu is feeling the pressure of winning at the Beijing Olympics.
While Liu Xiang's ordeal may be gone in about 13 seconds to run his 110m hurdles, Zhou has more than two hours during her marathon race to deal with.
"People are saying a lot of Liu Xiang and me," said Zhou, last year's London Marathon winner.
"I'm proud to be part of the high expectations, especially with Liu Xiang.
"I have never felt such kind of pressure before. It's an Olympics on home soil and I know it's the best platform to prove yourself."
But Zhou admitted the marathon is notorious for upsets, saying: "You never know what will happen in marathon. It's also very hot in Beijing in August and it's such a challenge to the athletes.
"I will try my best but I have no idea how fast I will run."
The 30-year-old Suzhou native battled injuries early in her career. She even retired in 2000, as her ankle injuries were deemed too serious to recover fully from.
Yet, while studying at Suzhou University, she joined the Suzhou track and field club and started running again.
In the first international race event she attended after her return to action, she won the Xiamen Marathon in March 2003.
After winning the 2006 Asian Games gold in Doha, she surprisingly claimed the London Marathon title last year in 2 hr 20 min 38 sec - the fastest time of 2007.
She continued her excellent form at the 2007 Osaka World Championships, where she became the only Chinese marathoner to finish on the podium at the Worlds, winning silver.
But Zhou, who finished 33rd in Athens, is cautious about her Olympic prospects.
"I will not push myself too much. The higher target you set, the worse result you might get," Zhou said.
"Hosting the Olympic Games has put a lot of pressure on us and we have to adjust to cope with it. I just hope I can run into the top three in the Beijing Games. Even the third place is a breakthrough for China."
Should she manage that, she would step out of the shadows of China's other star distance runners, Sun Yingjie and Xing Huina, 2004 Athens Games 10,000m champion.
"She is really hard working and can cope under very high pressure. She is also very smart and can always keep a clear mind," said her coach Liang Songli.
"She ran 40km daily during winter training. That means one whole marathon every day. I was really impressed by her devotion."
(实习生屈上 英语点津 Helen 编辑）