Chinese gymnast Zou Kai won men's floor exercise gold medal Sunday at the Beijing Olympics.
The 20-year-old, who was making his Olympic debut, won the gold medal at 16.050 points, after reigning world champion Diego Hypolito of Brazil and Olympic silver medallist Marian Dragulescu failed their routines.
Gervasio Deferr from Spain took the silver in 15.775 points, and the bronze went to Russia's Anton Golotsutskov, in 15.725 points.
It was host China's fourth gold medal, after its gymnasts swept the golds for men's team, women's team and men's all-around events.
Zou, entering the final in sixth place and low on the list of hopefuls for the gold medal, brought a surprise when he took to the floor as the fifth player and staged a strong performance on difficulty of 6.7 points, the highest among the eight finals.
"I do not think I am the dark horse," said Zou Kai, adding that he believed he is strong enough for a gold and he is in good form in the competition.
"I entered the floor exercise final in first place in last year's World Championships, and I came home empty-handed only because I did not play my normal level in the final," he said.
"The team medal is very important to all of us and this medal is very important to me," he added.
Before Zou, Dragulescu, a three-time Olympian and the floor exercise silver medallist in Athens, sat on the mat after a tumbling combination.
Hypolito, known for having one of the most difficult floor exercise routines, also suffered a last-minute defeat when he fell back and sat on the floor at the end of his complicated routines.
"I pushed my legs underneath and there was a mistake," said Hypolito. "It was a technical mistake. there's nothing I can do with it. I'm sorry, I'm sorry to all the Brazilians."
(Xinhua News Agency August 17, 2008)