Asian Beach Games: China makes its move

PHUKET: Thailand were given a scare yesterday when their grip on the Asian Beach Games crown was loosened by a strong surge from reigning champions China, who scooped nine golds to leapfrog into second.

At press time, the hosts lead the medal charge with 34 gold, 25 silver and 28 bronze medals, with China on 14 golds.

Thai athletes enjoyed a one-two finish in the women’s 60m run, with Khanrutai Pakdee hitting the tape in 8.06 seconds. Indonesia took the men’s 60m title, while Syria claimed the men’s high jump.

Thailand and South Korea performed well in sailing and windsurfing competition, sharing three golds apiece yesterday. The Koreans claimed the men’s RSX, boy’s optimist and girls’ optimist, while Thailand landed the women’s Laser Radial, women’s RSX and Hobie 16.

Thailand proved strongest in the petanque competition, bagging the women’s triple team gold following an impressive 13-3 win over Laos yesterday. The men’s crown went to Vietnam.

South Korean Jun Woongtae and China’s Huo Qi shared the honours in the beach pentathlon competition, with the former taking the men’s individual and the latter the women’s individual.

In the beach soccer, Thailand went down 3-5 to Uzbekistan in the 5th-8th play-off and will next play China in the 7th-8th play-off.

Playing under a blazing sun at Karon Beach, all Thai volleyballers scored convincing wins. Thailand B’s Yupa Phokongploy and Usa Tenpaksee tamed Hong Kong 2-0 in their final first-round match to top the women’s Pool D. Team-mates and reigning champions Varapatsorn Radarong and Tanarattha Udomchavee powered past Japan 2-0 to dominate Pool A. Sitthichai Sangkhachot and Nuttanon Inkiew came back to beat Japan in the men’s Pool E to top the preliminaries.

The top four teams in each pool make the cut for the knockout round.

“We played well in our last first-round match today,” Tanarattha said. “Japan are strong but they made more mistakes than us. It was extremely hot today and my team-mate Varapatsorn almost fainted. We’ve played too many tough matches recently – the Asian Games in Incheon, the Pattaya Challenge and here.”

Thailand drew a blank in the water skiing, which saw six gold medals on offer yesterday. China ruled the roost with three golds, while Japan, Singapore and Lebanon shared the remainder.

The 4th Asian Beach Games today will see a total of 14 gold medals on offer as follows:

Air Sports, 8 gold: men’s paragliding, men’s team paragliding, women’s paragliding, women’s team paragliding, individual accuracy, individual powered gliding economy, powered gliding all round overall and powered gliding team) at Chaofa Mine

Beach Athletics, 2 gold: men’s cross country and women’s cross country at Naiyang Beach

Beach Modern Pentathlon, 1 gold: mixed team relay at Naiyang Beach

Beach Sepak Takraw, 2 gold: men’s triple and women’s triple teams at Naiyang Beach

The Phuket Gazette is proud to have been selected as the sole English-language media sponsor for the 2014 Asian Beach Games being held in Phuket (story here).

For more information on the 4th Asian Beach Games, visit

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— The Nation / Phuket Gazette

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