Tour de Taiwan to kick off March 1 despite COVID-19 epidemic

Focus Taiwan
Date: 02/27/2020
By: Huang Chiao-wen and Ko Lin

Taipei, Feb. 27 (CNA) The Tour de Taiwan will be held March 1-5 as scheduled despite the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic, featuring 17 professional teams from Taiwan and around the world, the Chinese Taipei Cycling Association announced Thursday.

Lee Kai-chih (李開志), secretary-general of the association, said the competition will consist of five stages, each taking place in different cities and counties across Taiwan.

Taiwanese Feng Chun-kai (馮俊凱) will head a team that includes Peng Yuan-tang (彭源堂), Lu Shao-hsuan (盧紹軒), Su Yu-ming (蘇宇銘) and Wu Chih-hao (吳之皓), Lee said.

Feng, a veteran cyclist, secured a spot in the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics Cycling Road Race after finishing third in the Asian Road Cycling Championships in Uzbekistan last April, which was an authorized Olympic Qualifying Race.   [FULL  STORY]

Hsieh, Strycova ease into Doha semis

CHALLENGING CONDITIONS: Petra Kvitova battled not only Jelena Ostapenko, but also the elements, to secure a quarter-final berth in wind that made things ‘difficult’

Taipei Times
Date: Feb 28, 2020
By: Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter, with AFP, DOHA

Taiwanese-Czech top seeds Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova on Wednesday remained on track to claim a second title in the Middle East in a week, while Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur dumped world No. 3 Karolina Pliskova out of the singles at the Qatar Open.

Hsieh and Strycova, who lifted the doubles trophy in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Saturday last week, took just 65 minutes to wrap up a 6-4, 6-2 defeat of unseeded Belinda Bencic of Switzerland and Sofia Kenin of the US at the Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex in Doha.

The top seeds saved two of three break points and converted all four they created, winning 70 percent of points on their second serve to advance to a semi-final against Czech duo Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova, after the fourth seeds crushed Cagla Buyukakcay and Laura Siegemund 6-1, 6-2 in 57 minutes.

The top seeds defeated the Czech duo in a feisty semi-final at the Australian Open last month and have a 2-0 career record against them after a victory at the WTA Finals in Shenzhen, China, last year.    [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei still looking for first victory

Taipei Times
Date: Feb 26, 2020
By: Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter, with Reuters

Taiwanese No. 1 Hsieh Su-wei on Monday failed to claim her first main-draw victory of the season at the Qatar Open, while American teenager Amanda Anisimova claimed the third victory of her career over a top-10 player.

World No. 53 Hsieh fell to 6-4, 6-4 defeat to Russia’s Vera Zvonareva in 1 hour, 21 minutes on the hard courts at the Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex in Doha.

Zvonareva, 35, who reached a career-high ranking of No. 2 in 2010, saved two of four break points and converted four of six to beat the Taiwanese for a second time in Qatar after winning by the same score in 2018.

Hsieh has been knocked out in the first round of all five of her tournaments this year — Brisbane, Adelaide and the Australian Open, as well as in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, last week.

Taiwan grabs five golds in 2020 tug-of-war competition

Team Taiwan's perseverance pays off at international tug-of-war event in Ireland

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/02/24
By: Ching-Tse Cheng, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Team Taiwan secures five gold medals and one silver at 2020 World Indoor Tug of War Championships. (Tug of War Association photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Taiwanese national tug-of-war team won five gold medals and one silver medal at the 2020 World Indoor Tug of War Championships in Ireland on Sunday (Feb. 23).

The competition was co-hosted by the Irish Tug of War Association and the Tug of War International Federation (TWIF) and took place over the course of four days (Feb. 20–23) at the Aura Letterkenny Leisure Centre in northwestern Ireland. Joining Taiwan were teams from Ireland, England, Scotland, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, Russia, and Japan.

Despite competing against tough international opponents, Team Taiwan still managed to secure three gold medals in the women's category and two in the men's. The Taiwanese national champions also took silver in the U23 Men's 600 kg category, according to Liberty Times.

The team's head coach, Rex Kuo (郭昇), who was paralyzed by a drunk driver in May of last year, accompanied the contestants in his wheelchair. After receiving their gold medals, the youngsters expressed gratitude to Kuo and encouraged him, saying he could stand up again if the team could win, reported ETtoday.    [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan overwhelmed by Japan in Asian basketball qualifiers

Focus Taiwan
Date: 02/24/2020
By: William Yen

Taipei, Feb. 24 (CNA) Taiwan's national men's basketball team was routed by nearly 40 points by the visiting Japanese in Taipei on Monday in their first matchup in the qualifying round of the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup.

After crushing the Malaysians by more than 100 points on Friday, Taiwan fell to Japan 96-57 at Taipei Heping Basketball Gymnasium, which was again closed to fans to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Power forward Ryan Francis Rossiter led Japan with 17 points and 19 rebounds, while Taiwan captain Chen Ying-chun (陳盈駿) led the hosts with 13 points.

The loss gives Taiwan a 1-1 record in Group B, which also includes Malaysia, Japan, and China.

Hsieh triumphs again in Dubai

SOLO STAR: In the singles, Simona Halep won her first trophy since Wimbledon last summer, saying that the match against Elena Rybakina left her feeling ‘pretty dead’

Taipei Times
Date: Feb 24, 2020

Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and her doubles partner Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic defended

Simona Halep lifts the trophy after beating Elena Rybakina in the final of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships in the United Arab Emirates on Saturday.
Photo: AFP

their title at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Saturday, taking their second trophy of the season.

The top-seeded duo overcame Zheng Saisai of China and Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic 7-5, 3-6, 10-5 in a nearly two-hour match.

Hsieh and Strycova took an early 3-1 lead in the opening set, and although their opponents came from behind to tie 5-5, the duo kept their cool to take the next two games and win 7-5.

In the second set, the duo also took a 3-1 lead, but then gave up five games in a row to lose 3-6.

Taiwanese takes gold in professional disc golf tournament for first time

22-year-old Jacky Chen from New Taipei City pulls off upset win at Asia Open 2020

Taiwan News
Date: 2020/02/20
By: Micah McCartney, Taiwan News

Jacky Chen at Asia Open 2020. (Stanny Lee photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The disc golfing community received a bit of a shock earlier this month when a little-known player from New Taipei City emerged triumphant at the 2020 Asia Open in Kaohsiung, marking the first time a Taiwanese has taken home the purse since the tournament was first held.

While the sport of disc golf is not exactly a household name in Asia, it is growing by leaps and bounds. Last February, Singapore hosted its first tournament to be sponsored by the Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA), the Singapore Sling, and across the causeway, Malaysia’s inaugural PDGA Tour event Attack of the Chains took place in the state of Johor shortly after.

Occurring on a near biannual basis since 2009, this year’s edition of the Asia Open was organized by Mac Hsiao of the Taiwan Disc Golf Association. More than 60 of the world’s top disc golfers descended upon Kaohsiung on Feb. 8-9 to test their mettle in the sprawling Metropolitan Park.

Hsieh advances as Chan sisters crash

‘VERY WEIRD’: Top seed Simona Halep claimed to be flabbergasted after edging past Ons Jabeur, saying it was ‘up and down’ because the Tunisian ‘doesn’t give rhythm’

Taipei Times
Date: Feb 21, 2020
By: Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter, with AFP, DUBAI, United Arab Emirates

Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei on Wednesday cruised into the quarter-finals of the doubles at the Dubai Duty

Romania’s Simona Halep returns to Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur in their Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships match in the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday.
Photo: EPA-EFE

Free Tennis Championships, while the Chan sisters’ poor start to the season continued as the Taiwanese second seeds crashed out.

Reigning champions Hsieh and Barbora Strycova took just 58 minutes to see off the challenge of unseeded Chinese duo Han Xinyun and Peng Shuai 6-2, 6-2 on the hard courts in the United Arab Emirates.

The top seeds converted six of nine break points and limited their opponents to a 40 percent success rate on their first serve as they advanced to a quarter-final against American pairing Sofia Kenin and Bethanie Mattek-Sands, who recovered from a disastrous start to oust sixth seeds Kveta Peschke and Demi Schuurs 0-6, 6-0, 10-1 in 54 minutes.

Taiwanese duo Chan Hao-ching and Latisha Chan fell to a 3-6, 6-3, 10-7 defeat to another American pairing, Desirae Krawczyk and Alison Riske, in 1 hour, 19 minutes.    [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan’s Jung pulls off NY upset

Taipei Times
Date: Feb 15, 2020
By: Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter, with AP, UNIONDALE, New York

Jason Jung on Thursday pulled off yet another upset at the New York Open, ousting seventh seed Cameron Norrie to set up a quarter-final against defending champion Reilly Opelka at Nassau Coliseum.

Jung — born in Torrance, California, but who represents Taiwan — defeated the 59th-ranked Briton 6-4, 6-4 in 1 hour, 17 minutes to reach the quarter-finals on Long Island for the second consecutive year.

The world No. 131 converted three of six break points and won 79 percent of points on his first serve to see off South Africa-born Norrie.

Jung, who is nicknamed “The Chisel” due to his ability to “file down to size” bigger-hitting opponents, felt that his fitness was letting him down at the end of last season and has worked to improve it since December last year.  [FULL  STORY8]

Taiwan women’s football campaign for 2020 Tokyo Olympics ends

Focus Taiwan
Date: 02/10/2020

Taiwan’s Chen Yen-ping (陳燕萍, front, left) and China’s defender Lin Yuping / Photo courtesy of the Chinese Taipei Football Association

Taiwan's Chen Yen-ping (陳燕萍, front, left) and China's defender Lin Yuping / Photo courtesy of the Chinese Taipei Football Association

Taipei, Feb. 10 (CNA) Taiwan's campaign for a ticket to the women's football competition at the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics came to an end after a heavy 5-nil defeat to China Monday in the third round of the AFC Women's Olympic Tournament qualifiers in Australia.

Taiwan ended the competition with three points, which left it third place just one spot above Thailand on zero points in last spot, in Group B.

Currently Australia and China are in the top two places in the group on six points each and advance to the playoffs against the top two teams in Group A.

Despite walking onto the pitch at Campbelltown Stadium in New South Wales with an impressive 8-1 record, carding all wins in round 1 and round 2, with one win and one loss in round three, Taiwan's defense crumbled Monday just minutes after the starting whistle.