Taiwan yesterday won a silver medal in the women’s bowling trios and three bronzes in taekwondo sparring, canoeing and wushu at the Asian Games in Jakarta.
Medal prospects are also strong in tennis, as Taiwan’s regulars on the international circuit won their matches to advance to the quarter-finals, including Jason Juan in the men’s singles, and sisters Chan Yung-jan and Chan Hao-ching in the women’s doubles.
The best showing yesterday was from Taiwan bowlers Chou Chia-chen, Pan Yu-fen and Tsai Hsin-yi, who secured the silver medal with 4,255 pinfalls.
Malaysia’s Esther Cheah, Siti Safiyah Amirah and Syaidatul Afifah took gold with 4,326 pinfalls.
Tsai was quoted by the Central News Agency as saying she was overcome by emotion after learning that the team took second.
“This is my fourth time competing in the Asian Games and I finally won a medal,” she said. “My heart was pulsating hard in the finals, at like 3,000 beats a minute, and my legs were unsteady. That was how much the pressure was getting to me, but I had to battle on.”
“After the scores were announced, the pressure released and a heavy load lifted off my shoulders,” she added.
Coach Wu Hung-lin said it was a close race in the final rounds against Malaysia and Singapore.
“We needed two strikes to defeat Singapore, and Chou was successful. Then we needed a strike from team captain Tsai, who had the final shot,” Wu said. “We all jumped for joy right after Tsai released the ball, as it was clearly on target for a strike.”
In the men’s taekwondo 63kg bantam, Ho Chia-hsin was narrowly defeated in the semi-finals 7-8 to Zhao Shuai of China, leaving him tied for bronze.
In canoeing slalom in the women’s kayak K-1 division, Chang Chu-han raced to 103.8 points, earning her the bronze, with Aki Yazawa of Japan taking gold and China’s Li Tong pocketing silver.
In wushu sanda, Chen Wei-ting lost to Li Yueyao of China in the 52kg semi-finals, but still got the bronze for her efforts.
Although still in the ranking rounds of the compound women’s individual archery competition, Chen Yi-hsuan set a Games record with a score of 706.
The score also pushed Chen to the top of the rankings among 52 archers, while Taiwan’s Chen Li-ju was 10th with a score of 690 points.
Chen Yi-hsuan said she was delighted with her score, but added that she was not yet in her best form and hopes to post better scores in the elimination rounds.
In the men’s all-around artistic team gymnastics, Taiwan fell to South Korea by 245.2 points to 242.6 in the bronze medal duel.
The nation’s hoop players had mixed results in three-on-three basketball with one win and one loss, with the men’s squad defeating Mongolia 19-15, then losing to South Korea 18-20.
The women routed Nepal 19-8 in the opener, but fell to Japan 14-10 in their second game.
Meanwhile, all Taiwanese staff and athletes were declared safe after a fire broke out in an apartment complex in Jakarta housing the team, an official at the Taipei Economic and Trade Office in Jakarta said.
The fire broke out at about noon in the building, which is close to the Gelora Bung Karno Main Stadium, the official said.
Apartment management rushed to the scene and extinguished the blaze before it caused any serious damage, the official said.
The source of the fire was traced to an apartment occupied by South Koreans.
No members of the Taiwanese team were harmed and no property losses were sustained, the official added.
The team is renting 10 three-room apartments in the complex to save travel time to and from the stadium, the trade office said.
Elsewhere in the Games, India’s men routed Hong Kong 26-0 in field hockey, the eight-time Olympic champions’ biggest winning margin in an international event, while Japan broke their badminton drought to China in the women’s team final.
Olympic champions Misaki Matsutomo and Ayaka Takahashi sealed the 3-1 win with a 21-16, 21-11 victory over Huang Dongping and Zheng Yu.
Japan had not won the title since 1970, which China had held for two decades.
Additional reporting by AP
Chen Jifang hits the gym for at least two hours every day and has the physique to prove it. At nearly 70, she is being held up as a shining example as China orders its vast population to get fit and lose the bulge. The grandmother from Shanghai has become a minor celebrity in in the past few months after her newfound and unlikely love for working out made national headlines. After becoming a gym regular in December 2018, Chen lost 14kg in three months, and now sports the kind of flat stomach and toned muscles that people decades younger aspire to. She
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