Chinese Taipei's Lee Chih-kai bags bronze in pommel horse
Updated 16:48, 07-Nov-2018
Zi Di
Lee Chih-kai was one of the last three men standing in the pommel horse final, leaving his supporters on the edge of their seats as they tried to cheer the gymnast from Chinese Taipei to the top of the podium. 
He was the eighth and last qualifier for this event after botching his dismount in the preliminaries, but executes a dazzling routine when it matters most. Spinning, rotating and landing solidly the 22-year-old did not disappoint the crowd with a score of 14.966 to clinch the bronze medal. 
"I am very happy with my result here. The bronze medal marks an important moment in my life, but my routine was not perfect. I can learn from my mistakes at these World Championships and make sure my next performance is better," said Lee after the game. 
Embarking on gymnastics as a six-year-old boy, Lee shot to fame as a child due to his role in the 2005 documentary "Jump! Boys" follows a coach training seven youngsters in Taiwan's Yilan County. 
Lee left a lasting impression on viewers by using his skills to attract customers to his mother's vegetable stall at a local market. The only member of the group still competing in the sport eventually made it all the way to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, but was unable to reach the final. 
Lee Chih-kai of Chinese Taipei on the pommel horse during day nine of the 2018 FIG Artistic Gymnastics Championships at Aspire Dome, November 2, 2018, in Doha, Qatar /VCG Photo  

Lee Chih-kai of Chinese Taipei on the pommel horse during day nine of the 2018 FIG Artistic Gymnastics Championships at Aspire Dome, November 2, 2018, in Doha, Qatar /VCG Photo  

He continued to persist, however, and won gold in the pommel horse at this summer's Asian Games, before following up with bronze at the World Championships. 
"In previous years, I was not that experienced in international competition, and I had to slowly accumulate experience. This is my first time to qualify for a final at the World Championships. I think this competition is a good platform for me to see my efforts acknowledged, and learn how to achieve my goals, step by step," he noted. 
The man behind Lee's success is his coach from the documentary, Lin Yu-Hsin, and the addition of the Thomas Flair as a signature trick arose from one of his ideas. 
The creative design of the gymnast's routine fits in well with the latest pommel horse trends and has further improved his mentoring reputation, and he said that his coach has accompanied him for more than 10 years. 
Frankly speaking, the relationship between them is like father and son, and his achievements stem from his diligence. 
Lin was once a gymnast himself, but when he could not realize his dream, he dedicated his life to training younger generations. 
His experience is further reflected in the inspirational 2011 film "Jump Ashin!" which tells the story of a boy whose rough-and-tumble life turns around after he takes up gymnastics. 
The movie series continued to follow Lin and Lee in the trilogy's finale – Jump! Men" – which goes behind the scenes of their quest to reach Rio 2016. While the duo got a taste of the Olympics two years ago, they both believe the journey is not yet complete. 
"It feels like I am also performing on the apparatus when they are executing their routines, and we are sharing the same Olympic dream because I came up with their movements. These thoughts support our Olympic dream, and help us overcome difficulties," Lee's coach said. 
It has taken more than 15 years for Lee Chih-kai to earn a medal at the Worlds. His success describes the development of Chinese Taipei's gymnastics. However, for Lee and his coach, this is just the beginning...the Tokyo 2020 Olympics is the target.