Olympic MVP Zhu Ting is staying with VakifBank in Turkey for the upcoming club year. The 22-year old Chinese wing spiker has returned to her Turkish club team, a year after making 1.2 million (USD), hoping to build upon an outstanding debut that saw her named Best Outside Spiker and Best Scorer of the Turkish League.
VakifBank has built a dream team around Zhu, acquiring international stars such as American wing spiker Kim Hill, Dutch opposite Lonneke Sloetjes, and Serbian middle blocker Milena Rasic. Widely regarded as one of the top players in the world, Zhu cemented her legacy even further leading VakifBank to a dominant season.
Playing club ball outside of her native China for the first time, Zhu won back-to-back MVP awards leading Vakifbank to the gold medal in the 2016-2017 CEV Women’s Champions League in Treviso, Italy in addition to the 2017 FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championships in Kobe, Japan. At the CEV Women’s Champions League, Zhu led all scorers in the gold medal match with 22 points as VakifBank defeated Imoco Volley Conegliano in straight sets. At the Club World Championships, VakifBank and Zhu once again displayed their dominance as she tallied 19 points in another straight sets win, this time against Rexona-Sesc Rio de Janeiro.
It is going to be hard to top the success that Zhu has found in the last 12 months, both with her home country of China, as well as with her club team. But with a new contract in hand, and a loaded roster for her club team in Turkey, volleyball fans can expect more of the same for Zhu and VakifBank as they return to action for the 2017-2018 season.