Thu, Aug 21, 2008 - Page 1 News List

Chu wins bronze, Yang misses out

WIN SOME, LOSE SOMEChu Mu-yen, the 2004 Olympic taekwondo champion, won the bronze medal yesterday, while his girlfriend Yang Shu-chun shared fifth place

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

Defending Olympic taekwondo champion Chu Mu-yen (朱木炎) and his girlfriend, Yang Shu-chun, (楊淑君) failed in their bids for gold in Beijing yesterday, but Taiwan did not finish empty-handed as Chu grabbed a consolation bronze medal after victory in the repechage.

Chu, the nation’s best hope for another medal in Beijing following the dismal form of the baseball team, failed to repeat his heroics from Athens four years ago, losing to Mercedes Yulis Gabriel from the Dominican Republic in the quarterfinals of the men’s under-58kg by a score of 2 to 3.

Chu, however, recovered from his shock loss to beat Chutchawal Khawlaor of Thailand 4-1 and take bronze.

Rohullah Nikpai won Afghanistan’s first medal at an Olympics, upsetting world flyweight champion Juan Antonio Ramos of Spain to take the other bronze.

Mexico’s Guillermo Perez triumphed over Mercedes in the final to take the gold.

Yang, meanwhile, went down to a disappointing 4-1 defeat in the semi-final of the women’s under-49kg at the hands of China’s world champion Wu Jingyu (吳靜鈺), who went on to win the gold medal.

Wu scored three points, in the first round and one in the third round, while Yang scored her point in the second round. The two had met six times prior to yesterday’s match, with Wu winning four of those against Yang’s two victories.

Yang also lost out on a bronze medal when Daynellis Montejo of Cuba landed a scoring kick to her chest in extra time to win in sudden death overtime after the score was tied 2-2 at the end of the third round. Yang, who left the arena in tears, finished a shared fifth with Mildred Alango of Kenya.

Earlier, Yang defeated Gladys Mora of Colombia, who placed fourth in the 2004 Athens Olympics, 1–0 in the round of 16, and in the quarter-finals she defeated Sara Khosh Jamal of Iran 2-0 in an extra sudden death round.

Chu, who four years ago became only the second Taiwanese athlete and the nation’s first male to win an Olympic gold, said following his defeat that he would retire after the end of the Olympics.

He said he felt sorry for not being able to win a gold medal for Taiwan.

After the tournament from Beijing, where he was watching his son fight, Chu’s father, Chu Yao-lung (朱耀龍), said: “I would like to apologize to everyone back in Taiwan.”

When news of Chu’s medal reached his family in Pingchen, Taoyuan County, yesterday, his elder sister Chu Wan-i (朱婉儀) said that he had done his best and she was very proud of him.

Chu Wan-i said she has been glued to the TV set from early morning every day for the past few days, and yelled with delight as she watched her brother beat one opponent after another. When she saw him finally beaten yesterday, she could not help crying.

Having gone from an emotional high in the morning to a low later on, Chu Wan-i finally regained her composure in the evening, when it was confirmed that her brother had won the bronze. Mu-yen had done his best, she said, and she felt very proud of him.

Friends and relatives who were watching the TV along with the two Chu sisters congratulated them on Chu’s bronze medal win, as did Pingchen Mayor Chen Wan-te (陳萬得), who hurried over to the Chu residence on Chenhsing Road as soon as he heard the good news.

Also See: All that glitters not gold in Beijing

AND

Also See: HANCOCK'S GAME: Taiwan’s taekwondo couple come up short

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