Kungfu goes international

By Xu Xiaomin, Shanghai Star. 2002-08-01

China wins five wushu gold medals
Liu Hailong (L) fights to win 80kg gold medal on Saturday at the First World Cup Wushu Sanshou Competition in Shanghai. Liu defeated Gamal Ghanem from Egypt.

CHINA won five of the 11 gold medals at the First World Cup Wushu Sanshou Competition held in Shanghai recently. Among the eight Chinese competitors in the final, only two lost the match and won second place.

Held by International Wushu Federation, the competition, from July 25 to 27 in Shanghai Luwan Stadium, is divided into 11 categories: 48kg, 52kg, 56kg, 60kg, 70kg, 75kg, 80kg, 85kg, 90kg and 90kg+.

A total of 44 sportsmen from 16 countries and areas such as Russia, Brazil, Iran, the United States, South Korea, Poland, Vietnam participated in the game.

Chinese athletes had obvious priority over the foreign participants in matches of light weight. Most of them beat their opponents with two consecutive winnings.

But in the heavy weight field (over 80kg), China had only two people enter the final. Liu Hailong of the 80kg class conquered Gamal Ghanem from Egypt by 2 to 0. While Ren Yanbing of the 90kg+ submitted himself to Ataev Bozigit from Russia by 0 to 2.

"I don't think Chinese fighters gave their full play in the matches especially the first round," said Li Jie, president of Chinese Wushu Association. "They may have had too much pressure because most of the audience thought we should beat all the opponents because Wushu is China's unique skill."

Wushu originated in China. It has a distinctive background in oriental culture. Since its foundation in 1990, the International Wushu Federation has now 86 members federations from all the five continents.

Sanshou is one of the important disciplines of Wushu. Similar to kick-boxing except Sanshou incorporates grappling, throws and take downs. Sanshou matches are fought on a raised platform. The one winning two games out of three gets the victory. Sanshou's arsenal of kicks, punches, and take downs are derived from the techniques taught in Chinese Kungfu.

Copyright by Shanghai Star.