by Mike Grossman (from a report filed by YANG YANG Badminton Equipment)

November 9, 1996 (New Shuttlenws) - The silver and bronze medal-winning pairs in badminton men's doubles at the Atlanta Olympic Games will battle for the 1996 Hong Kong Open crown in tomorrow's finals.

The silver medalists, Cheah Soon Kit and Yap Kim Hock of Malaysia, and the bronze medalists, Antonius Iriantho and Denny Kantono of Indonesia, both won their semifinal matches today to set up a rematch of the Olympic semifinals.

The other Olympic medalists, the golden pair of Ricky Subagja and Rexy Mainaky of Indonesia, failed to progress past the round-of-16 when they were upset by Hwang Sun Ho and Lee Dong Soo of Korea.

Antonius and Kantono booked their place in the finals with a comeback victory over younger compatriots Tony Gunawan and Rudy Wijaya. The A-and-K pair dropped a very close first game to Wijaya and Gunawan in setting or overtime, 14-18. Antonius and Kantono recovered from the setback and won the second and the deciding third games, 15-5 and 15-8.

In women's doubles, Lisbet Stuer-Lauridsen and Marlene Thomsen of Denmark put an end to the the run of Susi Susanti and Finarsih of Indonesia in another three-gamer. The Danes took the first game from Susanti and Finarsih 15-6, but lost the second, 4-15. Lisbet Stuer-Lauridsen and Thomsen took control of the decider early and came away the 15-7 winners.

Susanti is one of the top women's singles players in the world who is seriously trying to play the doubles game at least in this series of year-ending major tourneys.

Stuer-Lauridsen and Thomsen will tangle with Indonesians Isoliana Indarti and Denyana Lomban who demolished the surprise semifinalists from Hong Kong, Ng Ching and Tung Chau Man, 15-2 and 15-4.

In mixed doubles, second-seeds Michael Sogaard and Rikke Olsen of Denmark beat 3-4 seeds Imam Tohari and Erma Ermawati of Indonesia, 15-10 and 15-4 to qualify for tomorrow's finals.

Sogaard and Olsen will play the winner of the semifinal match between the 3-4 seeded Swedes, Peter Axelsson and Catrine Bengtsson, and the dangerous Danish combination of Jens Eriksen and Marlene Thomsen.

Eriksen won a world championships silver medal in mixed doubles in 1995 while Thomsen was half of the 1995 world champion pair with Thomas Lund.

(e-mail: shuttlenws@badminton.org)