Team China misses out on gold, looks for silver linings

By WANG XU in Tokyo and SUN XIAOCHEN in Beijing | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2021-07-27 07:47
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Zhang Yufei of China competes during the women's 100m butterfly final at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, on July 26, 2021. [PhotoXinhua]

After a spectacular first two days at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, Team China had to look for silver linings on day three of competition when it failed to add to its gold medal tally.

After finishing day two atop the medal table with six gold, one silver and four bronze medals, China was in third place after adding four silvers and three bronzes to its tally on Monday.

Host Japan led the table with eight golds, followed by the US with seven.

Despite disappointments in table tennis and diving, there was plenty for China's supporters to cheer in the swimming events.

Zhang Yufei, 23, earned a silver medal in the women's 100-meter butterfly on Monday clocking 55.64 seconds, only 0.05 seconds slower than gold medalist Margaret MacNeil of Canada, who was born in China. Zhang said the race was a valuable learning experience, which would help her deal with nerves. "This is going to be helpful for my 200-meters (butterfly), and I believe I'm going to do a better job," she said after the race.

Zhang is a gold favorite in Thursday's 200m butterfly final. China has won the event twice in the past three Olympic Games, with Liu Zige in 2008 and Jiao Liuyang in 2012.

On Monday, Zhang's teammate Li Bingjie became the first swimmer representing an Asian country to claim a medal in the women's 400m freestyle when she secured a bronze.

To many people's surprise, reigning world champions Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen were defeated by Japan's Jun Mizutani and Mima Ito in the table tennis mixed doubles final.

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