When Liu Huana was 5 or 6 years old, she learned to help her older sister put goats out to pasture. By the time she was 7, she could take care of 20 goats by herself, often stopping to sneak fresh watermelon from another farmer’s fields…
Today, Liu is a member of China’s national women’s soccer team, training day and night and hoping to play in the Women’s World Cup that China is hosting this fall. Her journey out of poverty has been marked by single-mindedness and luck.
Not many rural children get a chance to work their way up to a place on a professional team in China, especially in sports popular among urbanites, such as soccer. In fact, Liu is one of the few members of the national team from the countryside. Most of the other women, whose ages range from 19 to 27, are from prosperous cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Dalian. [Full Text]
(Photo of Liu)