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Lee En-Chih

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Lee En-Zhi (リー・エンチ)(李 恩至) is a Taiwanese rock climber and one of the most successful foreign competitors in SASUKE's history, clearing the First Stage seven times (a record for a foreigner) and being one of only three foreigners to attempt the Final Stage, doing so in SASUKE 24 (the other two being Jordan Jovtchev and Kane Kosugi in SASUKE 8).

Early Tournaments

Lee first competed in SASUKE 17 by winning the first and currently only SASUKE Trials in Taiwan. The trial consisted of rock climbing and swinging from ropes to reach a bell in the fastest time. In the tournament, he wore #92 and flew through the First Stage and cleared with 3.43 seconds left. In the Second Stage, he showed good speed, clearing most of the obstacles. However, on the Metal Spin, he made a rookie mistake by grabbing the rope above his head. When the rope extended, his grip gave way.

He returned for SASUKE 18, taking his time in the race and deciding to choose a low number, #26. He was considered to be the first true threat to clear the First Stage. He managed to beat the Rope Glider and the Log Grip with little trouble. However, he had a lot of trouble with the Pole Maze and it took him several attempts to clear. His energy conservation strategy wound up backfiring, however, as he was only the second person to reach the Jumping Spider, not having the benefit of seeing people attempt it ahead of him to see what works and what doesn't. He was only able to get his legs into position and he failed there. 

Post-Hiatus

After a two tournament break, Lee made a return in SASUKE 21, wearing #49. In the First Stage, he took his time making sure to clear all the obstacles on his first attempt. He was able to clear the Jumping Spider that took him down and was the first person to clear the Flying Chute that day. He then cleared the First Stage with 4.06 seconds left. In the Second Stage, he was able to clear the Salmon Ladder, but spent most of his time here. He was able to clear the Swing Ladder and Metal Spin, but timed out between the second and third walls on the Wall Lifting obstacle.

He returned in SASUKE 22, this time assigned a higher start position, #79. He was able to fly through the First Stage and even cleared the new Slider Jump. He was only one of five to clear that day. In the Second Stage, he did not slow down and cleared with the second best time that day. In the Third Stage, he beat the first three obstacle with little trouble. On the Shin-Cliffhanger, he was able to make it up to the second ledge. Although he almost fell before swinging, he was able to start gaining momentum. However, he did not seem to have the motion needed to make it to the third ledge and could not even get one hand on the ledge before falling into the water.

He then competed in SASUKE 23, wearing #94. In the First Stage, he initially had problems. A strong wind gust blew right before he was to attempt the new Curtain Slider; one of his contact lenses fell from his eye at this time. Rather than run through it and risk missing the curtain, he decided to push the curtain, similar to the Circle Hammer the tournament before. The curtain stalled and he barely was able to reach the platform. He was able to clear but, lost a lot of time. The rest of his run was rushed and sloppy, but he still managed to clear the stage with 3.36 seconds left, the slowest time of the day. After that, somebody lent him her contact. In the Second Stage, he cleared the Salmon Ladder and the new Unstable Bridge, but made the same fatal mistake as in SASUKE 17 and he fell on the Metal Spin again.

He returned for SASUKE 24 wearing #92. It was his best tournament to date. In the First Stage he would fly through the first half of the course. On the Jumping Spider he slipped briefly on the Spider Walk portion, but quickly recovered, and on the Half-Pipe Attack he slipped while running along the wall and was barely able to grab the rope, he landed shakily on the mat, but he finished with 4.1 seconds to spare. In the Second Stage he was able to easily pass the Balance Tank, despite being modified since he beat it in SASUKE 17. He took his revenge on the Metal Spin and returned to the third stage. In the Third Stage he got his revenge on the Shin-Cliffhanger, becoming the ninth person to clear it. He also cleared the final four obstacles, earning his first trip to the Final Stage. This made him only the third foreigner ever to reach the Final Stage (Jordan Jovtchev and Kane Kosugi, SASUKE 8). In the Final Stage, Lee was slow on the Heavenly Ladder and was only able to make it around half up the G-Rope before time expired (About 19 meters up). He is the only foreigner in the Shin-SASUKE era to reach the Final Stage.

He competed in SASUKE 25, drawing #80 in the lottery. He would once again beat the first two stages. In the Third Stage, he was the last man standing. He fell attempting to grab the Ultimate Cliffhanger's third ledge, one of four men to fail to that obstacle that day.

Lee returned in SASUKE 26, receiving #95. His First Stage run was sloppy. It took him two attempts to clear both the Half-Pipe Attack and the Soritatsu Kabe, barely clearing with 1.32 seconds left. He would later clear the Second Stage with 13.7 seconds left. In the Third Stage, he eventually failed the Ultimate Cliffhanger when he failed the transition to the fifth ledge.

In SASUKE 27 he was expected to reach the Ultimate Cliffhanger again if not finally complete it, yet shocked everyone when his foot skimmed the water on the Step Slider, his first First Stage fail since SASUKE 18.

Lee was expected to do better in SASUKE 28, but while he made it through the first two obstacles, he failed on the Spin Bridge.

In SASUKE 29 he managed to clear the 1st Stage with time to spare. It was his first clear since SASUKE 26. In the 2nd Stage he started off in a good shape, however the redesigned Backstream slowed him down and with the combination of the reduced time limit, he timed out at the Passing Wall while trying to lift the first wall.

He participated in SASUKE 30 but unfortunately his whole run was digested. He was shown to have cleared the first two stages with ease but became one of six men that day to fail the Crazy Cliffhanger.

He is the only person in Shin-SASUKE history to clear the First Stage four consecutive times. He is also one of only three people to have progressed the further than all competitors twice in a row, along with Nagano Makoto and Urushihara Yuuji.

After SASUKE 30, Lee retired from Sasuke due to politics and Taiwan choosing a new representative for the competition.

Name Translation Problems

For years, SASUKE fans have referred to his as "Lee Enzhi," a purely phonetic translation of the Katakana used to represent his name. While the Katakana translation is the closest it can be, it isn't completely accurate, like many names translated from a foreign language. Prime examples are the English names "Kathy" and "Cassie," which are indistinguishable from each other after being translated into Katakana (キャーシー) (Kyāshī). Also, Paul Terek's first name uses the same Katakana (ポール) as the word "pole", which is a lone word frequently used in SASUKE obstacles. Li En Zhi is pronounced lē-ĕn-jē. "Li En Zhi" was also briefly used, having been the Chinese translation of his name; however, it is more accurate to use the Taiwanese spelling of his name, as Lee En-Chih is himself from Taiwan (as well as the spelling he uses).

When G4 translates SASUKE into Ninja Warrior, he is called "Lee Yen Chi" ("Lee Yen Chee" in SASUKE 17) with "Zhi" given as his surname.

Results

SASUKE # Result Notes
17 92 Failed Metal Spin (Second Stage)
18 26 Failed Jumping Spider (First Stage)
21 49 Failed Wall Lifting (Second Stage) Time Out. Third Wall.
22 79 Failed Shin-Cliffhanger (Third Stage)
23 94 Failed Metal Spin (Second Stage)
24 92 Failed G-Rope (Final Stage) Time Out. About 19m up.
25 80 Failed Ultimate Cliffhanger (Third Stage) Transition from the second to the third ledge. Last Man Standing.
26 95 Failed Ultimate Cliffhanger (Third Stage) Fourth Ledge.
27 97 Failed Step Slider (First Stage) Course Out. His foot skimmed the water.
28 83 Failed Spin Bridge (First Stage)
29 56 Failed Passing Wall (Second Stage) Time Out. First Wall.
30 2990 Failed Crazy Cliffhanger (Third Stage) Failed Jump. (4th Ledge)

References

1.http://www.wretch.cc/blog/x198333/4821771

See Also

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