Full Semifinals Results
by Mike Grossman (from reports filed by J. Chang and Joppy Fontanilla)

December 7, 1996 (New Shuttlenws) - The contestants of one of the most exciting badminton matches ever played, the men's doubles gold medal match at the Atlanta Olympic Games in August of this year, will clash again for all the marbles at the World Grand Prix Finals tomorrow in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia.

Ricky Subagja and Rexy Mainaky of Indonesia, the Olympic gold medalists, will play the silver medalists, Cheah Soon Kit and Yap Kim Hock of Malaysia, in the championship match of this grand tournament featuring the top performers on the badminton Grand Prix circuit for 1996.

Subagja and Mainaky defeated the hot new team of Chandra Wijaya and Sigit Budiarto, also of Indonesia, 15-10 and 15-6, in the semifinals earlier today. The Olympic medalists were in command for most of the match over their less-experienced and nervous compatriots.

Cheah and Yap trounced the Olympic bronze medalists Denny Kantono and Antonius Iriantho of Indonesia 15-5 and 15-6 in their half of the men's doubles semifinals.

The Malaysian pair were in full control of the play with aggressive attacking tactics. In the first they went ahead 10-0 before Kantono and Antonius could post a point. Cheah and Yap had game point at 14-2 and then closed out the game after the Indonesian boys scored 3 points.

In the second, Kantono and Antonius kept pace in the early going, but Cheah and Yap soon pulled away to a 13-5 lead with more aggressive play before finishing off the Indonesian pair 15-6.

In an earlier match during the round-robin stage, the Olympic finalists had also played each other with the Malaysians squeezing by the gold medalists in three games 9-15, 15-3 and 18-16. Tomorrow's finals is expected to be a toss-up with the Grand Prix Finals title on the line.

In the men's singles semifinals, Fung Permadi, a former member of the Indonesian team and currently a player for the Chinese Taipei badminton association, defeated the younger Indra Wijaya of Indonesia 15-6 and 15-8 to book a spot in the finals.

He will be playing Sun Jun of China, who outran and outplayed Alan Budikusuma of Indonesia 15-9 and 15-10.

In women's singles, Susi Susanti of Indonesia had an easy victory over Camilla Martin of Denmark 11-1 and 11-3 to gain the finals.

Ye Zhaoying of China, the current world champion who is looking for a big victory in Bali to erase disappointing performances at the world women's team championship (the Uber Cup) and at the Atlanta Olympics, defeated teammate Gong Zhichao 11-8 and 11-3 to earn the right to play for the Grand Prix Finals title.

In the women's doubles, Olympic champions Ge Fei and Gu Jun found themselves in a bit of trouble in their semifinal match against Lisbet Stuer-Lauridsen and Marlene Thomsen of Denmark. They had won the first game 15-8 but were outhit by the Danes in the second, losing at 10-15.

The Chinese pair recovered and bore down in the decider to win it and the match 15-7.

In the other semifinal, Eliza and Rosiana Zelin defeated Qin Yiyuan and Tang Yongshu of China 15-6 and 15-11.

In the mixed doubles, Tri Kusheryanto and Minarti Timur survived a tough second game against the Swedish pair of Peter Axelsson and Catrine Bengtsson to move ahead into tomorrow's championship match.

Kusheryanto and Timur had won the first game with some ease 15-6. However, the Swedes came back in the second with better attacking play from Axelsson as well as more control of the net by Bengtsson. The Swedes played the Indonesian duo to a standstill at 14-all and then at 2-all (or 16-all) in the overtime or setting.

Kusheryanto and Timur, though, managed to tally the winning point to end it at 17-16.

Michael Sogaard and Rikke Olsen of Denmark defeated compatriots Thomas Stavngaard and Ann Jorgensen 15-13 and 15-6 in the other mixed doubles semifinal. (One field report has the score at 18-13 and 15-6).

Tomorrow's championship matches:

Men's Singles
Fung Permadi - Chinese Taipei vs Sun Jun - China
Women's Singles
Susi Susanti - Indonesia vs Ye Zhaoying - China
Men's Doubles
Ricky Subagja/Rexy Mainaky - Indonesia vs Cheah Soon Kit/Yap Kim Hock - Malaysia
Women's Doubles
Eliza/Rosiana Zelin - Indonesia vs Ge Fei/Gu Jun - China
Mixed Doubles
Michael Sogaard/Rikke Olsen - Denmark vs Tri Kusheryanto/Minarti Timur - Indonesia