SHANGHAI, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) — Hosts China failed to make the finals in both the women’s 3,000m and men’s 5,000m relays, and had to settle for two silver and one bronze medal on the first day of the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating in Shanghai on Saturday.
More misery for China came after star skater Wu Dajing was injured after crashing at the final turn in the men’s 500m final. The 2018 Winter Olympic champion was sent to hospital and was unable to compete in the relay events.
Hungary’s Shaolin Sandor Liu won the gold in 41.920, while Wu crossed the line in 47.928. Shaoang Liu ranked third in 52.208.
"I felt Wu was trying to pass me from outside on the last lap so I raised my arm and wanted to show I didn’t foul," commented Liu after his win. "I had never seen him fall so badly. I hope he will recover soon."
"My father is Chinese, and he told me that if I want to win a gold medal at the World Cup, I’d better win it in China," he added. "I hope I can be faster in Sunday’s 500m (2) and the relays."
Wu also qualified for the 500m (2) on Sunday but it is unknown whether he will be fit enough to take part.
The host nation also took a silver and a bronze in the men’s 1,500m final as Chinese skaters Han Tianyu and An Kai failed to overtake Lee June-seo in the closing laps. The South Korean won in 2:21.652, with Han crossing the line second in 2:22.251, followed by An with a time of 2:22.566.
"I did a lot of physical training in the summer, so this season I felt more energetic than before," said Han, who has struggled for form in the past two years. "But I still need more time to get adapt to competitions."
Canada’s Kim Boutin dominated the women’s 500m final to win her fourth successive World Cup title over that distance, leading all the way to win in 42.845. Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands trailed in 42.877, while Italy’s Martina Valcepina was third in 42.971, and China’s veteran skater Fan Kexin finished fourth.
South Korean skaters took a 1-2 finish in the women’s 1,500m final, as Kim A-lang won gold in 2:25.066 and 2018 Olympic champion Chui Min-jeong took silver in 2:25.269, with Canada’s Courtney Lee Sarault taking third place in 2:25.395. China’s Zhang Yuting took fourth.
The Netherlands won the mixed 2,000m relay in 2:40.196, with Russia second in 2:40.208. The other two finalists, Canada and the United States, were disqualified after penalties.
The Shanghai leg of the 2019/20 ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating is the fourth stop of six in this season’s World Cup series and runs from December 6 to 8.
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