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Talk of the day -- Taiwan wins 1st Asian Games gold in China

2010/11/15 18:35:48

Taiwan defeated Japan in the finals of the men's soft tennis teamevent Sunday to win the country's first gold medal at the 2010 AsianGames in Guangzhou, China, ending Taiwan's gold drought at any majorsporting event held in China since the 1990 Asian Games in Beijing.

The following are excerpts from the local media coverage of theevent:

United Daily News:

Taiwan's soft tennis players Lin Ting-chung and Liu Chia-lunpulled off an upset win over their Japanese opponents in the men'steam event Sunday, giving the country its first gold medal at the2010 Asian Games.

In the first of three matches that made up the tie, the Taiwaneseduo of Yang Sheng-fa and Li Chia-hung lost to Koji Kobayashi andHidenori Shinohara 5-2, but Kuo Chia-wei managed to defeat hisJapanese rival Keiya Nakamoto 4-3 in the following singles to eventhings up.

In the final doubles that would decide the gold medal, Lin andLiu dropped the first three sets in the best-of-nine match, butpulled off a dramatic comeback and won the final set to take thematch 5-4.

The team broke a curse that had hung over the heads of Taiwaneseathletes for 20 years. No local athlete had won a gold medal at anymajor sporting event in China over the past two decades, spanning the1990 Beijing Asian Games, the 2001 Beijing Summer Universiade and the2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

Consequently, Taiwan's Olympic flag had never been hoisted andits national flag anthem never played at a medal presentationceremony in China until Sunday.

Many Taiwanese reporters covering the event were excited to thepoint of shedding tears as they witnessed the award ceremony.

Because of China's sovereignty claim over Taiwan, the Taiwanesedelegation has had to take part in major international sportingevents, including the Olympic Games and Asian Games, under thedesignation of "Chinese Taipei" instead of the country's officialnational title of "Republic of China." The ROC's national flag andnational anthem have also been barred from those occasions. (Nov. 15,2010).China Times:

Taiwanese athletes performed well Sunday on the second day of theAsian Games, winning one gold, two silver and four bronze medals tohelp move Taiwan into sixth place among 45 competing nations andareas in the overall medal standings.

Besides clinching the gold medal in the men's soft tennis teamevent, Taiwan also took home a silver medal in the women's softtennis team event the same day.

Meanwhile, swimmer Cheng Wan-jung won bronze in the women's400-meter individual medley, bagging Taiwan's first Asian Gamesswimming medal since the 1998 Bangkok Asian Games. She is alsoscheduled to compete in the 200-meter butterfly event Monday.

In judo, Wang Chin-fang won silver in the women's under-63 kg.competition, Taiwan's best judo result at the Asian Games in 12years.

Taiwan's other medal winners on Sunday were Tseng Han-chieh, whotook bronze in the men's judo under-90 kg. event, and Lee Wen-jung,who captured bronze in the women's Wushu (martial arts) competition.

The women's billiards squad won bronze in the team snookercompetition.

On the first day of the games, cyclist Hsiao Mei-yu took bronzein the women's 500-meter time trial, and Chen Wei-ling won bronze inthe under-48 kg. women's weightlifting event. (Nov. 15, 2010).

(By Sofia Wu)