Wed, Sep 24, 2014 - Page 1 News List

Lin Tzu-chi strikes gold in Incheon

Staff writer, with agencies, INCHEON, South Korea

Taiwan’s Lin Tzu-chi sets a new world record weight of 145kg in the women’s 63kg clean and jerk weightlifting at the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea, yesterday.

Photo: Reuters

Lin Tzu-chi (林子琦) broke two world records to snatch Taiwan’s second gold medal from China’s Deng Wei (鄧薇) in the women’s 63kg at the Asian Games yesterday and warned her rival she could lift even more weight, while Hsieh Su-wei (謝淑薇) and Chan Yung-jan (詹詠然) put aside their differences to guarantee Taiwan at least silver in the women’s team tennis.

In another extraordinary afternoon at the Incheon Moonlight Gardens weightlifting arena, four world records were smashed as Lin and Deng fought out a titanic battle.

Lin took the lead with a clean-and-jerk lift of 143kg for a 259kg aggregate that smashed the old world record of 257kg set in 2007.

Deng then strode out and hoisted a world record 144kg clean-and-jerk, to equal Lin’s total and go into gold medal position by virtue of a lower bodyweight.

Lin, with one lift remaining, somehow hauled 145kg above her head to relegate Deng to silver and set more world records for both the clean-and-jerk and the combined (261kg) in the process.

“Next championship, I will be stronger and do even better,” Lin said, looking ahead to November’s world championships in Kazakhstan. “Actually, I knew I could make this weight because I had achieved it in training.”

Lin, the Asian champion at 58kg last year, had started the competition as favorite along with Deng, the world champion at 58kg last year, despite both being something of an unknown quantity at 63kg after stepping up in weight.

“First, congratulations to Lin for winning gold,” Deng said. “I did well, but it wasn’t my full potential. I wasn’t capable of beating her today. I will be striving to reverse the result in the next championship.”

North Korea’s Jo Pok-hyang, a seasoned 63kg lifter, was expected to challenge the top two, but in her first snatch attempt she dropped the bar weighing 107kg dangerously onto her back, bringing gasps from the stunned audience.

It looked a terrible blow, but she showed amazing grit to emerge again and lift it on her second attempt. However, it was clear she was not 100 percent.

Despite bravely going on to lift 140kg in the second discipline, Jo never threatened the leaders and took the final podium position on a distant 247kg.

In the women’s team tennis, Hsieh and Chan, who rarely play together and had a highly publicized dust-up before the Games, put Taiwan within a match of another gold medal.

Chan earned a point for Taiwan in the opening singles rubber when she defeated Kazakhstan’s Yuliya Putintseva 6-4, 6-1, but the match was evened up when world No. 65 Yaroslava Shvedova topped Hsieh 6-3, 7-6 (7/4) in the second singles rubber.

With the tie in the balance, doubles specialists Hsieh and Chan ousted Putintseva and Shvedova 6-0, 6-2 in the doubles rubber to send Taiwan to the final.

Prior to the Games, Hsieh and Chan had not teamed up in a doubles match since the Federation Cup in 2012 and were considered not to be on the best of terms.

Prior as the Games, Hsieh tried to break the ice by suggesting that Chan team up with her in the women’s doubles to give Taiwan the best chance of a gold medal, but Chan declined, saying she would prefer to play with her sister, Chan Hao-ching, a response that saw Hsieh threaten not to play in the non-team events at the Games. Chan Chin-wei is the other member of the team.

Today, Taiwan face a China team comprised of world No. 43 Zhang Shuai, world No. 80 Zheng Jie, world No. 108 Zheng Saisai and world No. 144 Duan Yingying.

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