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Home >> Sports
UPDATED: 09:45, December 15, 2006
Day 13: Chinese women hold up more than half the sky
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Late Chinese leader Mao Zedong had envisioned a China in which women would hold up half the sky. Well, in sports, the Chinese women are already holding up more than their share.

China garnered 17 golds medals on the penultimate day of the Asian Games on Thursday, raising its total to 164. Among the Chinese gold tally, 93 came from women and 71 from men.

Chinese men have long been overshadowed by women in the Asian Games and Olympics. Among a total of 112 Olympic golds won by China, women have won 66 against men's 44, with the largest margin seen in the 2004 Athens Games, in which Chinese women swept 20.5 golds opposed to men's 11.5.

It's the other way round with China's closest rivals.

South Korea's men lead over women 38-20 in its gold count in Doha with the Japanese men having a 31-19 advantage.

"China attaches the same importance to the men's and women's sports, while many other countries and regions are tilted to men's sports," said Cui Dalin, a deputy chef-de-mission of the Chinese Asian Games delegation.

"Diligence of Chinese women is another reason for their sporting success," he added.

Women rider Li Yan started China's gold binge of the day, winning the points race to give the country its fourth track cycling gold of the Games.

Li edged out individual pursuit champion Lee Min Hye of South Korea by a single point over the 100-lap, 10-sprint race.

South Korea made up for the loss by bagging the men's Madison and Keirin titles, but still trailed China 3-4 in the cycling gold table.

Fresh from her victory in the women's tennis singles, Chinese star Zheng Jie paired with Yan Zi to beat Chinese Taipei's Chan Yung Jan and Chuang Chia Jung 6-1, 7-6 for the women's doubles crown.

The Games' last tennis gold went to Thailand's Danai Udomchoke, who beat South Korean Lee Hyung Taik 7-5, 6-3 in the men's singles final.

Chinese women's hoopsters lived up to their billing as Asia's No. 1 team, beating Chinese Taipei 90-59 in the final.

Chinese Wushu masters swept eight titles and missed only one - the men's 52kg division sanshou, won by Sornito Rene Catalan from the Philippines.

In canoe/kayak, China paddled away with three golds in the men's K1 500m (Liu Haitao), the men's C1 500m (Yang Wenjun) and the women's K2 500m (Zhu Mingyuan/Yu Lamei).

Kazakhstan claimed two golds in the men's K2 500m and C2 500m and Uzbekistan took one from the women's K1 500m.

Chinese divers completed a clean sweep of 10 golds after Lin Yue and Wang Xin won the men's and women's 10m platform respectively on Thursday.

China claimed its first Asian Games water polo gold since 1990 as it edged out Japan 9-8 after trailing most of the way in the final.

While Japan failed in its bid to win the water polo for the first time in 36 years, its women's softball team trounced Chinese Taipei 7-0 in the final.

Japan, which lags behind South Korea 49-51 in Wednesday's gold standings, saw its gap enlarged after its arch rival scooped seven golds for the day to lead 58-50.

South Korea, which had placed second overall behind China four times in the past five Games, has secured its runner-up position with only two golds up for grabs on the last day of the Games.

South Korea walked away with two fencing titles, nipping the Chinese in both the men's epee and women's foil team events.

Baek Jin Kuk won South Korea's fifth wrestling title as he snatched a 66kg class freestyle win over Japanese Takafumi Kojima.

Uzbekistan pinched down two wrestling golds and Iran picked one.

As China ran away on the medal table, South Korea dealt two heavy blows to the Asian sporting superpower.

After beating China 3-1 to win the men's hockey, South Korea disposed of the Chinese men's volleyball team 25-18, 22-25, 25-18, 25-16 Thursday night.

The South Korean team reportedly will pick up a 100,000 US. dollars check from their federation as a reward.

The United Arab Emirates swept the individual and team golds in the equestrian endurance.

Qatar's overspending in the Asian Games wasn't awarded with lots of gold medals. Six golds won by Qatar so far doesn't match up with a 2.8 billion US dollars price tag hung on the largest ever and the most expensive Asian Games.

Kuwait denied Qatar a men's handball gold, winning the final 27- 24.

The hosts will crack last shots at gold in Friday's men's basketball and soccer finals. They will take on Iraq in soccer and China in basketball.

Source: Xinhua

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