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Chinese Zhang Jian Completes Bohai Gulf Swimming

China's Zhang Jian swam across the Bohai Gulf to China's north eastern coast in the morning of August 10, after making 123.58 kilometers with a time of 50 hours and 22 minutes.

Zhang, a teacher of the Beijing Sports University, began his crossing from Lushun port, Liaoning Province, at eight clock on August 8th, and finished the distance about 10:22 this morning in Penglai shore, Shandong Province.

All his family, including his wife Li Xiaona, his parents and three brothers were waiting at the East Beach to greet Zhang, who looked a little pale and exhausted after staying on the sea for nearly 50 hours. He started out at 7:50 am Tuesday morning.

However, Zhang tried to stand on his own feet and walked for more than 300 metres after arrival, according to Ju Chuanjiang, a China Daily reporter covering the event on the spot. Zhang was sent to a hospital immediately in an ambulance for physical check-up.

"My husband is excellent and he is a hero," said Li, tears running down her face.

"I am quite proud of my son,'' said his father.

Zhang started out at 7:50 am Tuesday morning from Lushun in Northeast China's Liaoning Province. The total distance across the Bohai Bay is about 120 kilometers.

Winds on the Bohai Bay reached force 5-6 Wednesday morning, which added to the difficulty of Zhang's endeavor to be the first man to swim across the distance.

The first 25 kilometers of the swimming are treacherous because of thick seaweed that can entangle swimmers. But Zhang made it through unscathed.

After more than 30 hours, Zhang was reportedly still in good shape. He did have a stomachache because of the cold, so a nutritionist made hot noodles for him. Experts said the deepest part of Zhang's course reached 86 kilometers.

Zhang even asked people in the boat accompanying him how he was doing for the planned time. When he was told that he was about 45 minutes behind schedule, he said "that's too bad'' and kept swimming.

Both Zhang and his wife Li are teachers from Beijing Sports University.

(People's Daily)

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