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Chinese Chen Zhong kicking for taekwondo history
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Chen Zhong of China may make history on the last day of the Olympic taekwondo as she is gunning for her third consecutive Olympic gold medals.

If she can defend her title in the women's over 67kg category, she will also become the first taekwondo athlete to successfully win three Olympic golds in a row in the same weight category.

The 25-year-old Chen will be challenged by strong opponents before she forces her way to the glory as she will meet Adriana Carmona Gutierrez of Venezuela in the first round, who was the bronze medalist in the Athens Olympics.

"Chen has no specific opponent as every player at the Olympics is very strong," the vice president of the Chinese Taekwondo Association Zhao Lei once told Xinhua.

Her main rivals will be Sarah Stevenson of Britain, both of which will meet in the quarter-finals, world champion Maria Del Rosario Espinoza of Mexico and Kyriaki Koubari of Greece who won the gold medal in the World Qualification competition last September.

In the men's 80kg category, Chen's compatriot Liu Xiaobo, bronze medalist in the Asian Games in 2006, may also change the history for Chinese male taekwondo players if he could win a medal.

Mickael Borot of Frace, European champion in 2006, Olympic silver medalist Alexandros Nikolaidis of Greece and world champion Daba Modibo Keita of Mali are among the gold medal favorites.

(Xinhua News Agency August 22, 2008)

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