Dong Fangxiao: Underage Chinese Gymnast (Biography)

April 29, 2010

Meet Dong Fangxiao, she is the Chinese gymnast who won a bronze medal at the 2000 Olympics while  she was underage, now she and China will face the consequences. Keep reading to know her story plus take a look at Dong Fangxiao’s photos and video below.

Olympic Gymnast

Because at first she said her birth date was on January 20, 1989 we couldn’t assure when is Dong Fangxiao’s real birthdate, it was until years later that we found out that she was born on January 23, 1986 in Hebei, North China.

Like most Chinese gymnasts she started her training at a very young age, her mother Li Wenge was with her all the way until the international competitions started. In 2000 she was part of the Chinese Olympic Gymnastics Team that competed at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia. In order to compete at the Olympics athletes must be 16, which allegedly she was, I remember seeing the videos of her performances, they were unbelievable and so it was where she won a bronze medal, but soon the International Olympic Committee found out that her date of birth in her passport had been falsified and that she was actually fourteen years old, two years younger than the stipulated age allowed at the Olympics, and soon the investigations started.

On April 29 the news about Dong was informed she was stripped from her points earned at the 2000 Olympics, and taking the medal from China, plus she was stripped from the points she scored at the World Championships and World Cup between 1999 and 2000.

Some people thought that Dong shouldn’t be punished and argued that probably she didn’t even know that her passport had been falsified or that she wasn’t the one who did it, and that China was to blame and punished, but still all of her scores and medals will be erased forever, the only thing that she was left with was the pictures taken that day.

Dong is now retired, she lives in New Zealand with her husband, most people just know who she is by her name, but we will always know her as the Chinese Gymnast who could have been great, but a terrible mistake shattered her dreams, this even sounds good for a film. Now take a look at Dong Fangxiao’s videos below.

Olympic Gymnast photo

Dong Fangxiao Video

Dong Fangxiao Video


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