Asian Games Doha 2006

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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

China advanced to the quarter-finals in men's basketball

Asian powerhouse and current champion China stormed into the quarter-finals of the Doha Asian Games men's basketball tournament after beating Chinese Taipei 101-65 on Wednesday.

It's great to see that NBA prospect Yi Jianlian produced his best performance so far, scoring 28 points to lead the Chinese secure its third straight victory and a top four finish from its round-robin group with two matches remaining.

Actually Chinese Taipei fought bravely in the first quarter, jumping to a 12-6 lead and held it to 13-11. China overtook the lead 24-23 at the end of the quarter before pulling away with a 19-0 run early in the second quarter to go up 45-25.

Yi, the 2.12-meter power forward who had announced for the next year's NBA draft, shot 9-for-10 from the field in 16 minutes to rise China to a 52-33 lead at the half time.

We must consider that as his side improved to 80-46 at the end of the third quarter, China head coach Jonas Kazlauskas rested his starters in the fourth.

In the end, the records say that Zhu Fangyu and Hu Xuefeng added 18 and 16 points respectively for China.

China's Guo Yue win in Table tennis semifinal

The table tennis events were full of emotion. Despite the expectations, Singapore bagged another bronze in the Asian Games in Doha, after paddler Li Jiawei lost to China's Guo Yue in the women's singles semi-final encounter.

Indeed, Guo beat Li 11-7, 6-11, 12-10, 11-5, 11-7 to go into the final.

25-year-old Li is seeded 4th while 18-year-old Guo is seeded second for the championship. And Guo lived to her billing, taking the first game 11-7 in just five minutes. But Li fought back to take the second game 11-6.

Play was more even in the third game, but Guo went on to win 12-10. Guo piled on the pressure as she took the next game, 11-5.

It is fair to say that Li was still determined to give a good fight, but succumbed 11-7, giving Guo a 4-1 victory and a place in the final match.

Historical moment for Malaysian Shu Wai

It was a really touching moment for Malaysia. Artistic gymnast Ng Shu Wai had blisters on his hands and opted out of the individual all-around finals. And his move paid off handsomely when he vaulted his way into the history books as the first Malaysian to earn an Asian Games medal in gymnastics.

As we said, Shu Wai bagged a silver in the vault final at Aspire Hall 2 yesterday with a average of 16.487.

Actually, it could have been a gold had Shu Wai executed a better first vault. We must consider that Shu Wai was the sixth of the eight gymnasts out to perform the two vaults.

Amazingly, his first attempt, a two-and-a-half twist, was only worth 16.325. But the 21-year-old nailed a podium finish with a superb second attempt, earning the second highest point of 16.650.

Ri Se-gwang gave North Korea their first-ever gymnastics gold medal with a flawless second try of 16.675 for a winning average of 16.625.

Furthermore, Kazakhstan’s Yernar Yerimbetov, who was fourth in vault in the World Championships and the first to start yesterday, took bronze on 16.300.

WE can say that Shu Wai wore a nervous look before the start of the competition but was all smiles after he completed his routines.

“I stepped outside the mat a bit when I landed in the first attempt and it affected my score. But I’m still happy with what I have achieved. It’s still the first medal for Malaysia in gymnastics,” said the Taiping-born lad, who had difficulty getting a coach to train him in China in the run-up to the Asian Games.