Speed ​​skater Irene Wurst is the first athlete to win an individual gold medal in five different Olympics.

Marc Ventouillac runs with the torch during the Beijing 2022 Olympic torch relay on February 4 at Olympic Forest Park in Beijing. (Li He / Xinhua / Getty Images)

A French sports journalist who interviewed the tennis star peng shui In Beijing told CNN on Sunday that his impression was that Peng was “cautious” when asked about the sexual assault allegations leveled against a retired Communist Party leader.

A day after having dinner with IOC President Thomas Bach, Mark Ventouillac, a senior reporter at L’Equipe, and two of his aides sat down for an hour-long interview with Peng. Both meetings were inside the Olympics.”closed loop” in Beijing.

Peng made a post on Chinese social media site Weibo on November 2, which was later deleted. In interviews, she told Ventouillac that the controversy surrounding the incident was a “huge misunderstanding”.

Six people were present at the interview, including Chinese Olympic Committee chief of staff Wang Kan, who also translated the interview.

Interviewed were three members of the L’Equipe staff, and a young woman, Ventouillac, also thought she was an Olympic volunteer. Later the newspaper was translated from Chinese to French.

He said he had to submit a list of questions in advance, and that he was required to publish the story as a Q&A, rather than a piece with analysis and citations. But they were able to ask as many follow-up questions in the room as they wanted, and they didn’t feel the interview cut it.

“I didn’t feel any censorship during the interview,” Ventouillac said, adding that Peng seemed relaxed and was “laughing” when speaking about the game.

But he said his behavior changed when he went to the topic of alleged sexual harassment.

“Then, in an instant, we started talking about the affair, and this time, I have the feeling, and it was the feeling of my colleague Sophie, that we saw on her face, in her eyes, that she was very much like this. Be careful about the question, what we said, what we asked him and his answer.”

Ventouillac said that as Peng understood English, she thought she was gaining understanding of his questions, even though they were being translated into Chinese, a language his team does not speak. He was also wearing a mask, so all the expressions on his face were not visible.

Ventouillac said Peng’s responses to questions about sexual harassment were “very few”.

“I asked, ‘Why was your post on Weibo removed so quickly?’ And he said, ‘Since I had decided, I did it myself, to delete the post.’ Then I asked, ‘Why? Why delete Weibo posts?’ ‘Because I’ve decided.’ Small questions, short answers.”

Ventouillac said they had been interviewing since mid-January. He said he asked the IOC the best way to request an interview, and was directed to the Chinese Olympic Committee, which arranged for the interview.

He said he predicted Peng’s answers would be similar to previous reports, but felt it was important for a freelance journalist to see him in person to check that he was okay.