Great Britain performance director Gary Hall has accused Chinese taekwondo athlete Zheng Shuyin of “disrespect” over the histrionics which followed her controversial defeat to Bianca Walkden in Friday night’s world final.

Zheng dropped to her knees both in the ring and on the podium after losing the women’s +73kg final by disqualification despite holding a 10-point lead midway through the final round.

Chinese head coach Guan Jianmin told state news agency Xinhua the result was “a scandal” and “very dirty”, adding: “I have been doing this sport for 16 years but this is the first time I realised taekwondo can be played like this.”

World Taekwondo Championships – Day Three – Manchester Arena
Bianca Walkden won gold after her opponent was disqualified (Martin Rickett/PA)

Under the sport’s rules, a player who amasses 10 gamjons, or penalties, during a match is automatically thrown out. Facing defeat and with Zheng having already reached seven penalty counts, Walkden adopted legitimate tactics to force further errors.

Hall told Press Association Sport: “They (the Chinese) have no right to be offended – in fact Britain should be more offended for the disrespectful manner in which the Chinese athlete took her medal.

“Bianca won that match fair and square. The rules state that you have to fight until the very end and Bianca did so using right and proper rules.”

Walkden’s historic achievement in becoming Britain’s first three-time world champion was overshadowed by Zheng’s emotional protest and boos cascading down from the Manchester Arena crowd.

But Walkden defiantly insisted she would have no hesitation of doing the same thing again, while Hall questioned Zheng’s tactics after she had amassed her seemingly unassailable lead.

Hall added: “The rule is there to encourage fighters to fight. Previously it would have been advantageous to get 10 points in the lead then stand there and do nothing. This rule is intended to make fights more exciting.”

Bianca Walkden became Britain's first three-time world champion
Bianca Walkden became Britain’s first three-time world champion (Martin Rickett/PA)

It is not the first controversy involving British and Chinese taekwondo athletes.

At the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Sarah Stevenson’s defeat to home favourite Chen Zhong was overturned on appeal, and the Doncaster athlete was booed throughout the tournament as she went on to win a bronze medal.

Huddersfield 16-year-old Aailyah Powell secured Great Britain’s fourth medal of the Championships in the women’s -53kg division.

Aaliyah Powell
Huddersfield 16-year-old Aaliyah Powell won world taekwondo bronze (Martin Rickett/PA)

In her first senior competition, Powell had confounded expectations by battling through to the medal rounds where she was well beaten 38-5 by former world silver medallist Tatiana Kudashova of Russia.

Nevertheless it had been a hugely promising series of performances from Powell, the reigning world junior champion who is still preparing to sit her GCSE exams.

Powell told Press Association Sport: “It’s been really difficult studying and training this year but I wasn’t going to let my GCSEs stand in the way of an opportunity like this.

“I came in without any expectations and I’m really proud how I’ve performed on my senior debut. I have learned so much from this match and she [Kudashova] is not going to beat me in the same way again.”