Beijing Olympic bronze medalist Zhang Wenxiu continued her dominance in the women's hammer throw on national level, notching up the gold medal at the 12th Chinese National Games with a clear gap here on Saturday.
Representing Team PLA (the People's Liberation Army), the 27-year-old Zhang, who set the Asian record of 76.99 meters in Ostrava, the Czech Republic last year, cruised to the top podium with a fourth round effort of 73.68m. She bowed out at 72.48 in the last round, a mark also good enough to award her the gold.
"I will take a long break after these Games, preparing for my wedding in October," said Zhang, who hurled a season best of 75.58 to take bronze in the 2013 IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia last month.
Wang Zheng of Shaanxi, fourth finisher in Moscow, took the silver at 71.48 while the bronze went to Liaoning's Liu Tingting at 68.62.
Beijing sprinter Zhang Peimeng turned out to be the biggest star in the track and field arena on Saturday night. Being the fastest Chinese ever, who had just trimmed the men's 100m national record to 10.00 seconds at the Moscow worlds, the pinup sprinter enjoyed an easy qualification in the heats, clocking 10.50s to finish second in the group as he apparently slowed down with 10 meters to go and was surpassed by his national teammate Liang Jiahong.
"It is just three weeks after the World Championships. I slowed down before the finishing line because I have to save energy for the coming races," he said. "After the 100m semifinal and final, I will give myself all out in the 200m event, since it is the last major competition for me this season."
Shandong's Xue Changrui, who also made history in Moscow last month as the first Chinese to make it to the men's pole vaulting final at the World Championships, cleared 5.60 meters to win the gold at the National Games.
With the gold secured, Xue tried to set a new national record at 5.76 but fell on the ground at his first attempt. Xue injured his leg and was carried out of the stadium on a stretcher.
Xue's teammate Yang Yansheng finished second at 5.50. Anhui's Yao Jie also cleared 5.50 but had to settle with the bronze after count-back.
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