England's Hall Accidentally Hits Photographer With Racket
by Martin Coe and Mike Grossman(from a report filed by J. Chang)

December 14, 1996 (New Shuttlenws) - The young Indonesian player Jeffer Rosobin and the Chinese men's singles ace Dong Jiong won their semifinal matches today at the Sanyo World Cup at the Istora Senayan stadium in Jakarta, Indonesia to set up one of two Indonesia versus China finals tomorrow.

Also making the grade were two Indonesian men's doubles pairs - Denny Kantono and Antonius and Rexy Mainaky and Sigit, women's singles players Susi Susanti (Indonesia) and Wang Chen (China), Chinese women's doubles pairs Ge Fei and Gu Jun and Qin Yiyuan and Tang Yongshu, and two Indonesian mixed doubles teams - Sandiarto and Minarti Timur and Flandy Nimpele and Rosalina Riseu.

The men's doubles and the mixed doubles finals will be all-Indonesian affairs, while the women's doubles championship will be between two Chinese pairs. The men's and women's singles finals will pit Chinese against Indonesians.

Rosobin managed to scrape by the 31-year old Darren Hall of England in his men's singles semifinal. Rosobin, a developing member of the Indonesian national squad, played fast and attacked the veteran English player in the opening game. However, Hall was able to foil the young Indonesian's attacking play. Towards the latter part of the first game, Rosobin, who usually plays a more patient style with plenty of clears, was exhausted by his own aggressive tactics and played erratically to lose 9-15.

In the second game, Hall had the advantage over the exhausted Rosobin and reached match point 14-12. Hall however was unnerved by line calls that had gone against him and, once Rosobin got the service back, the Indonesian player pulled ahead on 5 straight points 17-14 to get back into the match.

In the third game, Hall was still fretting about the line calls and he played erratically and without concentration. Rosobin was able to reach match point 14-9. At this juncture, it was Rosobin's turn to make unforced errors. Hall was able to tally 3 points to close the gap.

But the Indonesian player then settled down and got the service back. Again serving for the match and a spot in the World Cup finals, Rosobin induced Hall to hit a shot into the net to win at 15-12.

After netting his shot to lose the match, Hall threw his racket in disgust and accidentally hit an Indonesian photographer in the mouth. The journalist was bleeding from the impact and apparently lost a tooth.

In the other men's singles semifinal, Dong Jiong of China had to struggle against Park Sung Woo of Korea in the first game but the Chinese player prevailed 17-14. In the second game, Dong dominated as the Korean, playing in his first tournament since late July, was exhausted. Dong took the second easily 15-2.

Both of the men's doubles semifinals went to three games.

In the Kantono-Antonius versus Cheah-Yap matchup, the Malaysians Cheah and Yap took an early 3-0 lead in the opening game. The Indonesians came back to tally 6 and take control. The game seesawed. Cheah and Yap had managed to take an 11-9 lead when injury struck Cheah's racket hand.

The match was stopped temporarily while Cheah had a finger on his racket (right) hand treated by the tournament medical staff.

When the match resumed, Denny Kantono and Antonius took advantage of Cheah and scored the next 6 points to win at 15-11.

In the second set, the Indonesians made many unforced errors and the Cheah-Yap tandem had an easy game, winning 15-3.

In the decider, Cheah and Yap were still in control and raced off to an 11-5 lead again on many Indonesian mistakes. But the Malaysian pair were not able to maintain the pace as Cheah began to tire and perhaps his injury began to get the better of him. His smashes lost their sting and were easily handled by Kantono and Antonius.

Kantono and Antonius began to get back in the game with attacking play as the tiring Malaysians started to make mistakes. Cheah and Yap though managed to tally 2 points to inch closer to victory at 13-11.

More Malaysian errors and their own attcking play let Kantono and Antonius pull ahead 14-13. The Indonesians then won the match when Yap was unable to put a smash block into play.

In the other men's doubles semifinal, Rexy Mainaky and temporary partner Sigit, both from Indonesia, dropped the first game to Russians Andrej Antropov and Nikolaj Zuev 9-15. But Rexy and Sigit soon solved the playing style of the lefthanded Antropov and partner Zuev and easily won the next two games and the match 15-3 and 15-3.

In the women's singles semifinals, Wang Chen beat Mia Audina 11-9, 3-11 and 11-7 in a match that was played with uncharacteristic caution and hesitation. This style of play was to the disadvantage of the normally aggressive Audina resulting in her loss to Wang.

Indonesian Susi Susanti defeated Ye Zhaoying of China in the other women's singles semifinal 11-2, 9-11 and 11-2.

In women's doubles action, Olympic gold medalists Ge Fei and Gu Jun of China asserted their supremacy by walloping Koreans Kim Mee Hyang and Kim Shin Young 15-2 and 15-4, while teammates Qin Yiyuan and Tang Yongshu eliminated Indonesians Eliza and Rosiana Zelin 15-9 and 15-4. The two Chinese pairs will battle it out for top honors tomorrow.

In mixed doubles, the Danish contingent's stomach ailments continued to affect their performance at the World Cup. The last Danish entry still in contention, Michael Sogaard and Rikke Olsen, lost their semifinal match to Sandiarto and Minarti Timur of Indonesia 6-15, 15-13 and 8-15.

Sogaard was too weak and dehydrated from his gastrointestinal problems to be effective throughout the match and could only play well in spurts.

Nimpele Flandy and Rosalina Riseu of Indonesia won the other mixed doubles semifinal over Chen Xingdong and Peng Xingyong of China 15-9 and 15-13.