Taiwan athletes snatched five golds in gymnastics, roller sports and weightlifting Aug. 23 at the Taipei 2017 Summer Universiade, bringing the nation's total gold medal count to 12.
Gymnast Lee Chih-kai took first place in men's pommel horse, claiming the country's first-ever Universiade gold in the category. He earned a score of 15.3, edging out Oleg Verniaiev of Ukraine, who won silver in the men's individual all-round at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
Lee first rose to fame in Taiwan when he was featured in the award-winning gymnastics documentary Jump! Boys. He said his performance at the Universiade was his best so far, and that he hopes to do even better in the future.
According to his coach, Lin Yu-hsin, Lee's high score can be attributed to his nearly flawless Thomas Flair, a common but difficult-to-master pommel horse move. Lin said their next goal is to win medals at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
Taiwan's roller sports athletes delivered strong performances the same day, claiming gold in both the men's and women's 3,000-meter relay with times of 4 minutes, 04.432 seconds and 4 minutes, 25.026 seconds, respectively.
In addition, Chen Ying-chu nabbed gold in the women's 500-meter sprint with a time of 43.739 seconds.
Following weightlifter Kuo Hsin-chun's record-breaking efforts of Aug. 21, Hung Wan-ting earned gold in the women's 69-kilogram category. Lifting a combined total of 227 kg, Hung outperformed Karina Goricheva of Kazakhstan, who took home a bronze at the Rio Olympics.
This is her first-ever gold medal in a global sporting event, Hung said. After the competition, she thanked her coach for his continuous support.
As of Aug. 23, Taiwan ranked third in the overall medal count with 12 golds, 13 silvers and 6 bronzes. South Korea topped the ranking with 17 golds, 11 silvers and 17 bronzes, while Japan was in second place with 15 golds, 11 silvers and 17 bronzes.
Source: Taiwan Today