Rexy and Sigit Down Cheah and Yap
by Martin Coe and Mike Grossman (from a report filed by J. Chang)

December 13, 1996 (New Shuttlenws) - At the last day of the round-robin first stage of the Sanyo World Cup invitational badminton tournament in Jakarta, Indonesia, Darren Hall of England, Jeffer Rosobin of Indonesia, Dong Jiong of China, and Park Sung Woo of Korea won their matches in the men's singles event to gain entry into tomorrow's semifinals.

Darren Hall defeated Pang Chen of Malaysia 15-2 and 15-13 to finish the first stage undefeated in Group A.

Rosobin who defeated the ailing Danish ace Poul-Erik Hoyer-Larsen yesterday beat Jeroen van Dijk of the Netherlands to also complete the round-robin undefeated in Group B. It was not an easy day for the Indonesian, however. Although Rosobin took the first game handily 15-5 , van Dijk played with determination in the second game, trying to avoid being totally without a game win in the tournament. The Dutch player scrambled to win a close second set 17-14.

In the decider, Rosobin had a romp 15-3.

In the other Group B match, Hoyer-Larsen, still suffering from a stomach ailment, lost to Lee Kwang Jin of Korea 15-8, 14-17 and 7-15.

In Group C, Dong Jiong, the 1996 Olympic silver medalist, beat the 1992 Olympic gold medalist, Alan Budikusuma of Indonesia, 15-8 and 15-13, to also finish the first stage without any losses.

In Group D, Park Sung Woo of Korea defeated Ong Ewe Hock of Malaysia 15-4 and 15-3. Park, Ong and Jens Olsson of Sweden, a walkover victor today over the ailing Martin Lundgaard Hansen of Denmark, all finished the first stage with 2-win and 1-loss records. Park, who also had a walkover win yesterday, took the semifinal berth by way of a better games won and lost record.

In women's singles, all the favorites qualified for tomorrow's semis with victories today. Mia Audina of Indonesia beat Ann Sondergaard of Denmark 11-4 and 11-0. Wang Chen of China beat Christine Gandrup of Sweden 11-3 and 11-1. Ye Zhaoying of China had a walkover victory over the ailing Camilla Martin of Denmark. Susi Susanti of Indonesia was tested by Gong Zhichao of China, but the Indonesian player prevailed 11-5, 9-11 and 11-4.

In men's doubles Group A, Indonesians Rexy Mainaky and temporary partner Sigit pulled off a surprise win over the group seeds Cheah Soon Kit and Yap Kim Hock of Malaysia 7-15, 15-7 and 15-7 to go into the semifinals as the Group A winner. Despite the loss, Cheah and Yap also are in the semis as the group runner-up.

Sigit who is playing in place of an injured Ricky Sibagja and who was reportedly picked by Indonesian doubles coach Christian Hadinata because of his ability to control the net play against Yap Kim Hock played well, while Yap was said to be suffering from a back injury and was not as mobile.

In Group B, Denny Kantono and Antonius of Indonesia beat Russians Andrej Antropov and Nikolaj Zuev 15-6 and 15-6 to finish the first stage with a clean slate. The Russians, with 2 previous wins, took second place and a spot in the semifinals.

In women's doubles Group A, Qin Yiyuan and Tang Yongshu of China knocked the seeded Indonesian pair of Indarti Isoliana and Denyana Lomban out of the running with a 15-8, 15-2 victory, while in Group B, Ge Fei and Gu Jun, also from China, defeated Indonesians Eliza and Rosiana Zelin 15-6 and 15-10 for the group leadership.

In mixed doubles, China's Chen Xingdong and Peng Xingyong took the Group A pennant by beating Indonesians Sandiarto and Minarti Timur 15-12 and 15-10, while in Group B, Michael Sogaard of Denmark, helped by several bottles of Gatorade and partner Rikke Olsen, fought off a stomach disorder, dehydration and the Indonesian pair of Nimpele Flandy and Rosalina Riseu to claim the group winner's spot in the semifinals with a 15-11 and 15-11 win.

Tomorrow's semifinals, which is being televised in China, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Australia and Russia (delayed telecast in some countries), as well as on satellite and cable throughout Asia by ESPN-Asia, will feature:

Men's Singles
Darren Hall - England vs Jeffer Rosobin - Indonesia
Dong Jiong - China vs Park Sung Woo - Korea

Women's Singles
Mia Audina - Indonesia vs Wang Chen - China
Ye Zhaoying - China vs Susi Susanti - Indonesia

Men's Doubles
Rexy Mainaky/Sigit - Indonesia vs Andrej Antropov/Nikolaj Zuev - Russia
Denny Kantono/Antonius - Indonesia vs Cheah Soon Kit/Yap Kim Hock - Malaysia

Women's Doubles
Qin Yiyuan/Tang Yongshu - China vs Eliza/Rosiana Zelin - Indonesia
Ge Fei/Gu Jun - China vs Kim Mee Hyang/Kim Shin Young - Korea

Mixed Doubles
Chen Xingdong/Peng Xingyong - China vs Nimpele Flandy/Rosalina Riseu - Indonesia
Michael Sogaard/Rikke Olsen - Denmark vs Sandiarto/Minarti Timur - Indonesia

Results of other matches today:

Men's Singles
Group A
Fung Permadi - Chinese Taipei beat Chen Gang - China 15-7, 17-15
Group C
Soren Nielsen - Denmark beat Oliver Pongratz - Germany 17-14, 15-7

Men's Doubles
Group A
Simon Archer/Chris Hunt - England beat Peter Axelsson/Par-Gunnar Jonsson - Sweden in walkover (unconfirmed)
Group B
Choong Tan Fook/Lee Wan Wah - Malaysia beat Tao Xiaoqiang/Ge Cheng - China 15-13, 15-12