Indonesia 2018: Yu Chui Yee off to golden start

Wheelchair fencing opens with dramatic foil finals 07 Oct 2018
two wheelchair fencers in combat

The first day of wheelchair fencing competition saw four thrilling individual foil finals

By Priyanka Sharma | For the IPC and APC

Multi-Paralympic champion Yu Chui Yee of Hong Kong started her campaign at the Indonesia 2018 Asian Para Games on a rousing note, winning the women’s individual foil category A gold at the Gor Popki Cibubur Arena in Jakarta on Sunday (7 October).

In the second final on day one of the wheelchair fencing competitions, Yu Chui had to battle past a late challenge from Chinese newcomer Gu Haiyan to emerge victorious.

The Hong Kong star, who took the early lead 9-4, was caught in the middle by her spirited opponent at 12-12. The match went neck-and-neck from there on, before Yu Chi used her experience to fight her way to a 15-12 scoreline and the gold.

Tough conditions

Earlier in the semi-finals, Yu Chui had to overcome Chinese top seed Zhou Xufeng by just one point 15-14 in the most exciting encounter of the day.

“This is my first competition in Jakarta. And I am loving it. But I needed some more time to get used to the hot weather here. In the morning, I wasn’t feeling too well,” said Yu Chui.

“But the close match against Chinese top seed Xufeng in the semi-finals warmed me up. It was an encouragement. I am participating in five events here. I hope I can achieve my target,” the seven-time Paralympic champion continued.

Yu Chui is also looking forward to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, which will be her fifth Games. “After the Asian Para Games, my focus will be on the Tokyo Paralympics qualification. I hope to bring more glory for my country,” added Yu Chui, who was the flag bearer for Hong Kong at the Opening Ceremony.

Chinese triple

The day’s first gold medal match was contested by China’s Rio 2016 champion Zhou Jingjing and Thailand’s Jana Saysunee, also a Paralympic winner in London 2012 in the women’s individual foil category B.

Despite loud support from the Thai fans in the stand, it was Jingjing who won the game 15-11, leaving Saysunee in tears.

“It was an exciting match. Thai players are tough so I attacked her a lot. Also, she has a good height, so I had to be cautious. I am happy to win the gold,” said Jingjing.

Paralympians Sun Gang and Hu Daoling made it a triple joy for China, securing comfortable wins in the men’s individual foil events. Gang defeated Cheong Meng Chai of Hong Kong in category A, while Daoling outplayed Fujita Michinobu of Japan in the category B final.