Buryak, the 2011 Junior World Championships silver medallist, had, before Chendgu, never been able to replicate her performances from the youth ranks. This all changed, however, as she powered through the combined event course in the sensational time of 13:05:99, having started way behind the leaders following her 26th place in the riding event.
An exhausted Buryak declared at the finish line, “It was very hard. The crucial moment for me was the third round of shooting, I did not miss once. Then I knew I could win. Now I am very happy.”
The home crowd was treated to a rousing finish with two local stars making sure of their place on the podium as Wanxia Liang and Wei Wang crossed the line just behind Buryak.
Liang, 22, had really impressed two days prior by winning the Women’s Group Qualifier in only her second ever appearance on the international circuit, and after placing ninth in the riding event, she kept her nerve with the pistol and ran to her very limits to take silver. 20-year-old Wang’s second spot in the ride gave her the perfect platform with which to bring home the bronze medal.
UIPM President Dr h.c. Klaus Schormann declared, “The competition has shown that the development of the Women’s side has been excellent, especially in Asia with two Chinese finishing on the podium. This underlines the fact that we are a truly global sport. The purpose built facilities for Modern Pentathlon at the Pierre de Coubertin have made this competition once again one of the highest in quality. It is always such a pleasure to be here in Chengdu.”
Ukraine’s Iryna Khokhlova came fourth and ride winner Ludmila Kukushkina from Russia was fifth. France’s Elodie Clouvel, the dominant force in the pool, battled through the pain barrier to make up the top six. World #1 Laura Asadauskaite, who began the day so well by winning the fence, struggled during the combined and finished in tenth position.
The medals were awarded by UIPM President Dr Schormann, UIPM Vice-President Kui-Sung Choi and UIPM Secretary General Shiny Fang.