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July 29, 2021

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Historic moment as rowers soar

After a 13-year wait, China claimed its second Olympic rowing gold medal in the women’s quadruple sculls at Tokyo 2020 yesterday.

China also won a bronze in the men’s double sculls, the first men’s medal for China and Asia in an Olympic rowing event.

Cui Xiaotong, Lyu Yang, Zhang Ling and Chen Yunxia started strongly and led all the way to clinch gold in 6 minutes 05.13 seconds, a big margin of 6.23 seconds over second-placed Poland. Third place went to Australia in 6:12.08.

China’s winning result also lowered the previous world’s best time of 6:06.84.

The quartet won a gold medal at the 2019 world championships, and have been unbeaten since.

It has been 13 years since China achieved its first-ever Olympic rowing gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, also in the women’s quadruple sculls.

Zhang Liang and Liu Zhiyu, 2019 world champions, led the first 1,000 meters in the men’s double sculls, but were later surpassed. They ended up with a bronze medal in 6:03.63, the first men’s Olympic rowing medal for China and Asia.

France bagged gold in 6:00.33 in a new Olympic record time, and the silver went to the Netherlands in 6:00.53.

“Our goal was actually a gold medal,” said Liu. “Anyway, it’s a big breakthrough for China. It proves that we have the ability to compete against European rowers.”


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