China win's men's team event in artistic gymnastics

Society Materials 12 August 2008 10:21 (UTC +04:00)

China secured the men's team gold in the artistic gymnastics event at the National Indoor Stadium Tuesday, beating defending Olympic champion Japan into second place, dpa reported.

The host nation finished well clear of the rest of the eight-man field with a winning points total of 286.125 for the six disciplines.

Japan finished a distant second on 278.875, while the United States beat off the challenge of Germany to take bronze thanks to a score of 275.850.

China's victory was achieved through dominant performances by the six-man team of Chen Yibing, Huang Xu, Li Xiaopeng, Xiao Qin,Yang Wei and Zou Kai, not least in the team's strongest events of vault, pommel horse and rings.

The Chinese team also scored the highest points total in the horizontal and parallel bar disciplines but was only fourth in the floor exercises.

All-around world champion Yang scored well but was outshone by some of his teammates as Chen scored a superb 16.575 points at the rings, Li 16.775 on the vault, Huang 16.475 on the parallel bars and Xiao 16.100 on the pommel horse.

Japan, with Takehiro Kashima and Hiroyuki Tomita the only members of the 2004 gold-medal team remaining, put in its weakest performance in the vault, scoring the lowest points total of the eight teams after mistakes by Kashima and Koki Sakamoto.

The United States, silver-medallists in Athens but missing defending Olympic all-around champion Paul Hamm through injury, assured itself of the bronze with a strong performance in the horizontal bar in the sixth and final rotation.

Jonathan Horton scored 15.700, Justin Spring 15.675 and Joey Hagerty 15.550 for a total of 46.925, a total only bettered by the Chinese score of 46.950.

Mistakes by Maxim Devyatovskiy and Sergey Khorokhordin on the pommel horse during the first rotation proved costly for the Russian team as it finished down in sixth place, behind South Korea but ahead of Romania and France.