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China victorious but misses the clean sweep

21 January 2007

China’s clean sweep of gold medals in the individual event of the Australian Youth Olympic Festival badminton competition was hijacked by Malaysia on the final day.

In the mixed doubles, Xiao Li Wang and Tian Li defeated Wee Kiong Tan and Khe Wei Woon of Malaysia 21-17 11-21 21-17.

“It was a pretty intense and difficult game, but I’m really happy to come away with the win,” Wang said.

Jie Liu won the women’s singles final against Li Ya Lydia Cheah of Malaysia easily 21-12 21-11. Liu’s smashes proved to be too strong for Cheah, who seemed frustrated with her own errors.

“I’m really glad with winning the gold medal because I think I played hard to win my points against my opponent,” Liu said.

Meanwhile in the men’s singles, number one seed Long Chen didn’t disappoint the crowd with a thrilling win over Malaysia’s Abdul Latif Mohamad Arif.

“I think he (Arif) played very well. I thought my preparation coming into today’s match was very good but it was a bit disappointing to lose the second set since I was leading at first,” Chen said.

In the women’s doubles, Liu and Wang teamed up to defeat Malaysia’s Khe Wei Woon and Hui Lin Ng 21-14 22-20.

The match that had the crowd sitting on the edge of their seats was definitely the men’s doubles between Chinese pair Li and Biao Chai and Malaysian pair Arif and Indra Mawan Saniru Vountus.

The Chinese claimed the first set 21-17, but the Malaysians stepped up to win the second set 16-21, pushing the match to a third set.

With the crowd cheering both teams on, the Malaysians sealed the match with a third set score of 12-21.

“I think the Malaysians have had more competition experience which was an advantage for them. I also think that our game can be stronger and more consistent,” Li said.

Final results:
Mixed doubles
GOLD Tian Li and Xiao Li Wang (China)
SILVER Wee Kiong Tan and Khe Wei Woon (Malaysia) BRONZE Christopher Adcock and Gabrielle White (Great Britain)
Women’s singles
GOLD Jie Liu (China)
SILVER Li Ya Lydia Cheah (Malaysia)
BRONZE Michelle Cheung (Great Britain)
Men’s singles
GOLD Long Chen (China)
SILVER Abdul Latif Mohamad Arif (Malaysia)
BRONZE Yongzhao Ashton Chen (Singapore)
Women’s doubles 
GOLD Jie Liu and Xiao Li Wang (China)
SILVER Khe Wei Woon and Hui Lin Ng (Malaysia) BRONZE Samantha Ward and Gabrielle White (Great Britain)
Men’s doubles
GOLD Abdul Latif Mohamad Arif and Indra Mawan Saniru Vountus (Malaysia)
SILVER Tian Li and Biao Chai (China)
BRONZE Marcus Ellis and Christopher Addock (Great Britain)

Ellen Li
AYOF

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