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Chinese table tennis gold medallist sued over Singapore gambling debt
May 29, 2017 / 3:39 PM / 6 months ago

Chinese table tennis gold medallist sued over Singapore gambling debt

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Kong Linghui, one of China’s best-known table tennis players and now head coach of the country’s national women’s team, is facing a HK$2.55 million (254,686 pounds) lawsuit over a gambling debt to a luxury hotel in Singapore, according to a Hong Kong court writ.

Women's Team - Gold Medal Match - Riocentro - Pavilion 3 - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - 16/08/2016. Liu Shiwen (CHN) of China and Ding Ning (CHN) of China sit with their coach Kong Linghui before playing their doubles match against Petrissa Solja (GER) of Germany and Xiao Na Shan (GER) of Germany. REUTERS/Jeremy Lee

Singapore has become a playground for Asia’s rich and famous, luring cash-rich Chinese gamblers who increasingly turned their attention to the city-state when a crackdown on corruption by Chinese President Xi Jinping took on high-rollers in the nearby gambling hub of Macau.

The writ submitted to the court by the Marina Bay Sands hotel said Kong signed a credit agreement two years ago to borrow S$1 million from it. The writ said Kong had since repaid S$545,625, but failed to offset the balance in full, leaving S$454,375 unpaid.

Kong could not be reached for comment. The hotel did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kong is one of China’s best-known table tennis players, with two gold Olympic medals under his belt.

He made his name on the world stage between the late 90s and early 2000s when he won a total of three Olympic medals – the two golds and a silver.

Marina Bay Sands is controlled by U.S. billionaire Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands Corp.

Reporting By Venus Wu; Writing by Anne Marie Roantree; Editing by Alison Williams

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