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Yu and Du win doubles gold (pic)

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Category: Badminton News Published: 16 August 2008
Posted by Hits: 1388
China took a step closer to an Olympic badminton clean sweep on Friday, winning the women's doubles gold and setting up an all-China women's singles final. Image

China's favourite for gold in men's singles, Lin Dan, also advanced to the final in that event.

Yu Yang and Du Jing won their first game against South Korea's Lee Kyung-won and Lee Hyo-jung 21-15 with a solid defence.

In the second, Yu and Du smashed a barrage of shuttlecocks at the Koreans to overwhelm them 21-13, winning 12 of the last 14 points and taking the gold.

"This gold medal is just the beginning, and for we two young players it's a major motivator," said the 24-year-old Du.

South Korea's Lee Kyung-won, who called a time-out in the first game to have her left foot bandaged, said the injury and bad calls contributed to their troubles.

"During my semi-final match, there were a lot of bad calls and I didn't expect so many faults to be called - too many to dismiss. Similar things happened in the finals, too," she said.

"Playing in China, I never thought the home advantage would be so strong."

Earlier, Athens gold medallist in women's singles, Zhang Ning, beat Maria Kristin Yulianti of Indonesia 2-0 in the semi-finals, and top seed Xie Xingfang pulled back from behind to beat third seeded compatriot Lu Lan 2-1 to reach the gold bout.

In men's doubles, Cai Yun fell to his knees and yanked off his shirt after he and partner Fu Haifeng knocked out South Korea's Lee Jae-jin and Hwang Ji-man. They will play the top seeded Indonesians Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan, who bumped off Denmark's Lars Paaske and Jonas Rasmussen.

Xie, whose boyfriend is Lin Dan, had a rocky start on Friday when Lu dominated game one to win 21-7 with accurate drops. But Xie found her game and won the second and third 21-10 21-12.

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