Tue, August 19, 2008
Sports > Gymnastics

Li Xiaopeng brings China eighth gymnastic gold

2008-08-19 10:33:33 GMT2008-08-19 18:33:33 (Beijing Time) Xinhua English

Li Xiaopeng of China competes during men's parallel bars final of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games at National Indoor Stadium in Beijing, China, Aug. 19, 2008. Li Xiaopeng claimed the title of the event with a score of 16.450. (Xinhua Photo)

Li Xiaopeng of China competes during men's parallel bars final of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games at National Indoor Stadium in Beijing, China, Aug. 19, 2008. Li Xiaopeng claimed the title of the event with a score of 16.450.(Xinhua Photo)

Li Xiaopeng of China competes during men's parallel bars final of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games at National Indoor Stadium in Beijing, China, Aug. 19, 2008. Li Xiaopeng claimed the title of the event with a score of 16.450.(Xinhua Photo)

BEIJING, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- Chinese ace gymnast Li Xiaopeng won the parallel bars gold medal at the Beijing Olympics on Tuesday, proving his strong comeback to the podium at the highest level.

It was the eighth Olympic title claimed by the Chinese gymantic team in the close contests in Beijing.

For Li, it was his second Olympic gold in parallel bars following the glory in the Sydney Games eight years ago.

As the last one to compete, the multiple world champion did not let nerves catch him. He distinguished himself with next-to-perfect execution, although the difficulty value of his routine was 6.9, lower than 7.0 of his three rivals.

Li got a score of 16.450 points, a sizable margin of 0.200 ahead of the silver medalist Yoo Won-chul from South Korea. The bronze went to Anton Fokin from Uzbekistan who scored 16.200 points.

With the win, Li has accumulated four Olympic golds, becoming one of the Chinese athletes who collected the most Olympic titles.

Li's teammate Huang Xu, also a three-time Olympian as Li, made a mistake in his routine and garnered only 15.700 points, ending up to the sixth in the final. That failed to live up the expectation of becoming China's 1-2 punch in the competition.

Li was part of the Chinese Olympic champion team in the 2000 Sydney Games and also won an individual gold on parallel bars there, but after the Athens Games, he stayed away from gymnastics arena for more than one year, receiving a foot operation.

Last year, he made a successful return to the peak form at the World Cup Series, winning golds in parallel bars twice, once on home soil and the other time in Germany.

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