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Malaysian pair win badminton men's doubles gold at Doha Asiad

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Category: Badminton News Published: 09 December 2006
Posted by Hits: 673
Newly-combined Malaysian pair Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong won the badminton men's doubles gold at the 15th Asian Games in Doha on Saturday.

In the last final of the badminton competition, the 21-year-old Koo and 19-year-old Tan suppressed Luluk Hadiyanto and Alvent Yulianto Chandra from Indonesia with strings of quick shots.

Koo and Tan wasted little time to win the first set 21-13, but faced challenges from their awakened opponents in the second set.

Hadiyanto and Chandra launched a fierce counterattack to lead 10-8, but lost six points successively under their rivals' powerful smashes.

Finally, Koo and Tan ended the showdown 21-14, grabbing the only badminton gold for Malaysia at the Doha Asian Games.

Indonesian shuttlers Markis Kido/Hendra Setiawan and South Korean pair Jae Sung/LEE Yong Dae took the bronzes.

"We really wanted to win this gold, since we lost the team event," said an excited Tan, "Our coach asked as to pull out all the stops."

Malaysia lost to South Korea in the men's team semifinals and their top shuttler Lee Chong Wei surrendered to Indonesian Olympic champion Taufik Hidayat in the men's singles semifinals.

But Koo and Tan, only pairing up for one month, continued to bring hopes for the upset team.

They knocked off world number one Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng of China in the quarter-finals, followed by a convincing win over Indonesian third-seeded Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan.

"I did not think I would get this far, but I did think about upsetting one of the top players," said Koo, "We just played the right tactics."

Since Koo's former partner Chan Chong Ming was in poor form, Tan stepped into the breach to combine with Koo one month before the Asian Games.

"We completely trust each other," said Tan.

(source: Xinhua)
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