HANGZHOU, China (AFP): Chinese young gun Pan Zhanle blitzed to a new Asian record to get the better of South Korean star Hwang Sun-woo and win the Asiad 100m freestyle title on Sunday.
Pan powered to the wall in 46.97sec to edge teammate Wang Haoyu (48.02) with Hwang having to settle for bronze in 48.04.
In another event, China's Li Bingje powered home to claim the women's 1500m freestyle title at the Asian Games on Sunday and go one better than her silver medal at the last Asiad.
Binjie outlasted teammate Gao Weizhong to touch in a gruelling 15min 51.18sec -- a new Games record time. Gao took silver in 16:05.73 ahead of Japan's Yukimi Moriyama (16:17.78).
In another final, two-time world champion Xu Jiayu successfully defended his men's 100m backstroke title in a new Asian Games record time on Sunday.
The 28-year-old stormed home in 52.23sec, ahead of Japan's Irie Ryosuke (53.46) and South Korea's Lee Ju-ho (53.54).
Then, China's Olympic gold medallist Wang Shun stormed to the Asian Games men's 200m medley title in a new Asian record time to easily beat breaststroke king Qin Haiyang on Sunday.
Wang hit the wall in 1min 54.62sec ahead of his Chinese teammate (1:57.41), who scored a clean sweep of all the breaststroke titles at this year's world championships. Japan's 2019 world champion Daiya Seto (1:58.35) won bronze.
Chinese teenager Tang Qianting was also a winner after she held off Japan's Satomi Suzuki to take out the Asian Games women's 50m breaststroke title on Sunday.
Tang, who set a new Asian record in the morning heats, won in 29.96sec. Suzuki (30.14) grabbed silver ahead of Hong Kong's Siobhan Haughey (30.36).
Hosts China swept the first gold medals at the Asian Games in Hangzhou on Sunday in a statement of intent on day one of the region's answer to the Olympics.
China claimed the first gold when Zou Jiaqi and Qiu Xiuping dominated the women's lightweight double sculls rowing to kick off a medal rush for the home nation.
China won 12 of the first 19 golds at the Games, with their rowers especially emphatic. South Korea were their nearest challengers with four golds in total.
Zou and Qiu finished in 7min 6.78sec in their final, with Uzbekistan's Luizakhon Islamova and Malika Tagmativa taking silver, almost 10 seconds behind.
It was especially satisfying for Zou, who hails from Hangzhou.
"I am very excited as it's my first Asian Games," she said, clutching her gold medal.
"Stepping onto the podium today is a new starting point to help us prepare for next year's Paris Olympics," added Qiu.
The hosts soon doubled up on the rowing lake as the men's lightweight double sculls gold was won by Fan Junjie and Sun Man, who finished five seconds clear of India's Arjun Lal Jat and Arvind Singh.
China won six of the seven golds at the Fuyang Water Sports Centre rowing venue on Sunday morning with only Hong Kong's Lam San-tung and Wong Wai-chun getting in on the party by winning the men's pairs.
China's rip-roaring start to the 19th Asian Games also brought golds in modern pentathlon, shooting and wushu.
Elsewhere, India's women cricketers ripped through Bangladesh, dismissing them for just 51 in the first semi-final.
They knocked off their target in just 8.2 overs and will face Sri Lanka in Monday's final of the Twenty20 competition.
Other sports beginning on Sunday included boxing, rugby sevens, hockey and eSports -- where superstars such as South Korea's "Faker" are expected to draw huge crowds for its debut as a full Asian Games medal event.
President Xi Jinping opened the Games on Saturday night after a delay of a year because of China's now-abandoned zero-Covid policy.
With more than 12,000 competitors from 45 nations and territories, the Asian Games has more participants than the Olympics.
They will battle for medals in 40 sports across 54 venues.
Most events take place in Hangzhou, a city of 12 million people near Shanghai, but some sports are being staged in cities as far afield as Wenzhou, 300 kilometres (180 miles) to the south. - AFP