Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai’s record put under question

Written by By Sara Glickman, CNN

Peng Shuai, ranked 83rd in the world, was reported missing in February 2016. Amid swirling speculation about her disappearance, a report later surfaced questioning whether a recording she gave police in January of a 2013 phone call regarding the murder of a businessman was real.

But in August, one year after Peng appeared to disappear without trace , her husband and manager dismissed the leaked audio, saying he doubts it is authentic.

The report into her disappearance, leaked to state news agency Xinhua, suggested that Peng, a two-time Grand Slam doubles champion, was the victim of a third party extortion attempt.

Peng Shuai has not been seen in public since February 2016. Credit: JENS SCHOLTE/Getty Images AsiaPac/Getty Images

The conversation is set to appear in a Chinese court on August 17, according to the report. It details the August 2014 kidnapping attempt on the British citizen, Jean McQuade, a former adviser to MP Clive Betts.

Peng allegedly overheard her husband, German bar manager Jurgen Ehner, telling police over the phone that he had tried to arrange the murder of her family members. Ehner is serving 10 years in prison.

Following the Xinhua report, Peng’s management was criticized and questioned about the authenticity of the recorded conversation.

Doubts about authenticity

But during an appearance on the Chinese TV news show ‘Talk of the Town’ on August 13, Ehner said the recording was not authentic. “I think it could have been made on a hacked phone,” he said.

Ehner also pointed out that his voice resembled that recorded on the recording.

Peng reportedly accepted a number of financial and lifestyle loans before her disappearance, reports suggested. Credit: AFP PHOTO / AFP/AFP/Getty Images

Ehner goes on to slam the police department that detained Peng for the conversations, saying he is fed up with reporters who speak on behalf of government authorities.

Peng, meanwhile, made a video statement calling on Hong Kong people to oppose Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying’s plan to tighten minimum residency requirements for people working in the SAR, or the Chinese part of Hong Kong.

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