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Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun clinches bronze medal in Olympic karate

Team Taiwan earns record 12th Olympic medal with karate win

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Wen landing hook kick to Terliuga's head.

Wen landing hook kick to Terliuga's head. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun (文姿云) on Thursday (Aug. 5) fought her way to the semifinals of the Women's 55-kg kumite category of the karate competition and has won the bronze medal at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

In her first match, Wen lost 5 to 2 to Bulgaria's Ivet Goranova. However, she bounced back in her second fight, vanquishing Iran's Sara Bahmanyar 5 to 1.

Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun clinches bronze medal in Olympic karate
Wen landing kick on Goranova. (CNA photo)

By her third match, she had accumulated enough points to only need a win or a tie to make it to the semifinals. Although her opponent, Turkey's Serap Ozcelik, had lost her two previous matches, she did not go out without a fierce fight.

Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun clinches bronze medal in Olympic karate
Wen throwing kick at Bahmanyar. (CNA photo)

At the one-minute mark, Ozcelik took a one-point lead, but 28 seconds later, Wen countered with a point of her own. Less than nine seconds later, Wen scored a two-point technique.

Not to be outdone, Ozcelik responded with a three-point technique. Wen clawed her way back by scoring two more one-point techniques and managed to fend off Ozcelik's last-ditch attempt to at least tie the match.

Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun clinches bronze medal in Olympic karate
Wen dodging punch by Ozcelik. (CNA photo)

Wen came out victorious with a final score of 5 to 4. She next slated to face Ukraine's Anzhelika Terliuga in the semifinal match.

In the semifinal, Wen squared off with world No. 1 Ukraine's Anzhelika Terliuga for a shot at the gold medal round. For the first half of the bout, both fighters sized each other up, neither willing to make the first move.

At the 1:59-mark, both flew at each other and landed punches with lightning speed, scoring one point each. However, at 2:07, Terliuga caught Wen with a roundhouse kick to the head as Wen tried to circle behind her, garnering three points.

With time winding down at 2:59, Wen managed to land a miraculous hook kick to the back of Terliuga's head as the two clashed. A video replay called by her coach revealed that the kick indeed hit the mark.

Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun clinches bronze medal in Olympic karate
Wen landing hook kick to Terliuga's head. (CNA photo)

The two found themselves tied 4 to 4 with only one second left. In the final clash, Wen appeared to have landed a roundhouse kick to Terliuga's face.

Taiwan requested a replay to see if the kick scored a winning three points. However, the referee denied the request and threw up the decision to the judges, who unanimously voted in favor of the Ukrainian.

In order to reduce unnecessary injuries to competitors, the Olympic karate kumite competition does not require participants to fight for the bronze medal and instead awards two of them. Therefore, Wen was awarded the bronze medal, the first for Taiwan in Olympic karate, which is being held for the first time at the Tokyo Games.

Taiwan's Wen Tzu-yun clinches bronze medal in Olympic karate
Wen holding her new bronze medal. (CNA photo)