South Korea endured a disastrous finish to the men's 1,500m final ©Krasnoyarsk 2019

China's An Kai seized upon an unexpected opportunity to win the men's 1,500 metres short track speed skating gold here at Krasnoyarsk 2019 today as South Korean team-mates Park Jiwon and Hong Kyunghwan collided to crash out of contention.

The South Korean team had appeared on course to be celebrating a superb opening day of short track competition here, with the first medals in an ice sport awarded at the Winter Universiade.

Both Park and Hong had eased through to the final to raise hopes of South Korean success in the men's competition.

Hong placed himself in pole position in the six skater final as he stormed into the lead heading into the closing laps.

He was chased down by Park, who sought to overtake his compatriot as the finish drew closer.

The result would prove disastrous for the South Korean team, as Park clipped his team-mate's foot as they tackled one of the closing corners, leading to both men sliding into the barriers.

Skating close behind, An was able to ease through to take the gold medal in a time of 2min 34.350sec, with his South Korean rivals still recovering from the abrupt end of their podium hopes.

Quentin Fercoq of France secured the silver medal by achieving a time of 2:35.460, with Japan's Kiichi Shigehiro rounding off the podium in 2:36.058.

Kim A-lang won the women's 1,500m title ©Krasnoyarsk 2019
Kim A-lang won the women's 1,500m title ©Krasnoyarsk 2019

Despite the disappointment of the men's competition, South Korea already had cause for celebration with Kim A-lang winning the women's event.

Kim headed into the competition as the favourite, with gold medals in the women's 3,000m relay at the Sochi 2014 and Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics showing her pedigree.

She lived up to expectations on the ice by leading from early on before crossing the finish in 2:38.363.

France's Aurelie Noelle Monvoisin secured the silver medal by achieving a time of 2:38.426.

Russia's Ekaterina Efremenkova continued the host nation's impressive start to the Universiade by winning bronze.

She finished in 2:38.581.