Romance and love can also take place between sportspeople when they are on and off the pitch, regardless of their nationalities.
There are many Chinese and foreign husband-and-wife duos who have claimed medals and lifted trophies at Olympic Games and world championships over the years.
1. Shen Xue / Zhao Hongbo
|Shen Xue (R) and Zhao Hongbo celebrate their victory in the final of the pairs figure skating event at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada. The couple won China's first Olympic gold medal in the sport. [Xinhua]|
The husband and wife duo have won 35 championships from various competitions, among them three World Figure Skating Championships, since they became partners in 1992. They also won an Olympic gold medal in the pairs figure skating event at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada.
It was China's first Olympic gold medal in this sport.
After retirement several years ago, the couple has been tasked with promoting the popularity and development of figure skating amongst the public besides cultivating more professional talents for China.
2. Yao Ming / Ye Li
|Yao Ming (R) and his wife Ye Li pose for a photo at the closing ceremony of the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. [Xinhua]|
NBA legend Yao Ming and his wife Ye Li were leading players in China's National Basketball Teams before their retirement.
Yao became acquainted with Ye when both of them were students at Shanghai Youth Sports School.
The couple announced their engagement to the public during their attendance at the closing ceremony of the 2004 Athens Olympic Games and got married in East China's Shanghai in August 2007.
Yao has received full support from Ye regardless of the change in his identity from a professional basketball player to the boss of Shanghai Basketball Team and President of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) over the past decade.
3. Li Na / Jiang Shan
|Jiang Shan (R) comforts Li Na when she fails to win the Australian Open singles title in 2012. [Xinhua]|
Li Na, Asia's only Grand Slam singles champion, became acquainted with her husband, Jiang Shan, when both of them were junior players at the Wuhan-based Hubei Provincial Tennis Team in 1996.
Li fell in love with Jiang during their four-year-long companionship in the team.
Due to injuries, Li announced her first-time retirement prior to the 2002 Busan Asian Games, though great expectations were placed on her at the event.
After that, Li and Jiang went to Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan and continued their academic studies.
Under the encouragement of Jiang, Li came out of her retirement two years later.
Jiang acted as Li's private coach and devoted his time and energy to inspiring her to strive for higher achievements after they got married in 2006.
Li has attributed her remarkable success over the past decade to Jiang's hard work, sacrifice and love.
4. Jason Kenny / Laura Trott
|British cyclist Jason Kenny (R) and his wife Laura Trott pose for a photo when both of them win a gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. [Xinhua]|
British cyclist Jason Kenny and his wife Laura Trott successfully claimed four gold medals for their country in total at the 2012 London Olympics Games.
Both of them also grabbed one gold medal respectively for Britain at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in Brazil.
Kenny's outstanding performance in Brazil wrote his name into the British Olympic history books and secured his status among the top three in total Olympic medals won by British athletes, with seven.
5. Katerina Emmons / Matthew Emmons
|Czech shooting star Katerina Emmons (R) and her husband Matthew Emmons pose for a photo after she grabs a gold medal in the women's 10m air rifle final at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. [Xinhua]|
Czech shooting star Katerina Emmons came forwards with her hands out to comfort the frustrated U.S. athlete Matthew Emmons when he missed out on the gold medal because of an avoidable mistake on the last shot at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.
They fell in love and gave their full support to each other's shooting careers ever since then.
Katerina Emmons' kiss to her husband Matthew Emmons, who again missed the medal podium simply because of his poor performance on the last shot, became a sweet memory for millions of people watching worldwide, who not only remembered his dramatic loss but also admired the shooting lovebirds' tender moment.
Katerina Emmons claimed a gold medal in the women's 10m air rifle final while Matthew Emmons pocketed the men's 50m rifle prone silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.
6. Roger Federer / Mirka Federer
|Swiss tennis maestro Roger Federer (R), his wife Mirka and their twin daughters[Xinhua]|
Swiss tennis maestro Roger Federer met his future Slovak-born wife Mirka Federer for the first time during their attendance at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games.
After that, they fell in love with each other and got married in 2009.
Audiences have often seen the appearance of Mirka Federer when Roger Federer has taken part in professional competitions over the past decade.
Right now, the couple has four children of their own.
(Source: Xinhua/Translated and edited by Women of China)
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