Asian Games Doha 2006

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Friday, December 08, 2006

Korean Rider suffered a tragic death

The 2006 Asian Games had a terrible shock Thursday with the death of South Korean rider Kim Hyung-chil, crushed by his horse during the equestrian event on a rainy sixth day of competition.

That's why a minute of silence was observed at all competition venues shortly after Kim's death, the first to occur during competition in the Asian Games' 55-year history.

But it's good to mention that Japan won three gold medals on the final night at the pool to finish the Games even with China in swimming.

What's more, dual Olympic champion Kosuke Kitajima took gold in the 200-metre breaststroke, Junya Koga won the 50 backstroke and the Japanese men won the 4x100 medley relay.

"I feel kind of relieved because I won the gold medal," Kitajima admitted. "I couldn't swim a great time, but I am happy to contribute to the team."

In fact, China's only gold of the night came from Qi Hui in the women's 200 individual medley. Going into the last night of swimming, China had a 15-13 cushion on gold medals over Japan, having started the program with five victories in six finals on the opening night.

South Korean Park Tae-hwan earned the gold of the men's 1,500 with a time of 14 minutes, 55.03 seconds for his third gold of the meet, while Tao Li of Singapore won the women's 50 butterfly.

It's important to notice that Jordan won its first ever Asian Games gold medal when Mohammad Al Bakhit beat Vasavat Somswang of Thailand in the men's 54-kilogram taekwondo final,

Furthermore, the track and field program got underway Thursday with Han Yucheng of China shrugging off the wet conditions to win the first athletics gold medal of the games in the 20-kilometre walk.

As for Han, the 2003 Asian champion, he did not collect a single warning on the way to his time of 1:21:41 seconds, ahead of silver medallist Kim Hyun-sub in 1:23.12, who earned South Korea's first ever medal in the event.

Also China's Liu Hong won the women's walk in 1:32:19, ahead of Ryoko Sakakura of Japan and He Dan of China.

The main track and field program begins Friday at the great Khalifa Stadium.

Japanese athletes won the men's four rowing event and Shin Eun-chul took gold in the men's single sculls for South Korea to break up a Chinese sweep at the rowing.

And in the popular baseball events, Taiwan won its first Asian Games gold medal after first baseman Lin Chih-sheng's two-run single in the bottom of the ninth inning earned an 8-7 victory over Japan.

South Korea put 10 unanswered goals past Oman goalkeeper Dawood Siddiq to firm its claim for a semifinals place in the men's field hockey.

It's important to mention that Thursday's men's and women's team tennis final and the soft tennis were postponed by the rain in this desert city, with more heavy showers forecast for Friday.