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** This NEW SHUTTLENWS report is presented by YANG YANG Badminton Products and their Western USA agents BADMINTON ALLEY. **

February 14, 1999 (NEW SHUTTLENWS) - At the Friendship Cup under-21 team competition currently beng played at the Skydome sports arena in Toronto, Canada, the U.S.A.'s national badminton team fell victim to Netherland last night, losing the team match 2 to 5. With the defeat, coupled with their disappointing 3-4 loss to Canada on Friday night, the U.S.A. side has been eliminated from contention.

Playing amidst the bright, colorful, and noisy atmosphere of a Chinese New Year festival, the Americans had their chances for victory in four of the seven individual matches - the two men's singles, the mixed doubles and the men's doubles, but only managed to come out on top in two of them. The Dutch side, on the other hand, banked on the internationally experienced Ginny Severien and Melissa Trouerbach to sweep the three women's matches.

Howard Bach tried to start the U.S.A. side off with a victory over Stacey Bouwmann in the opening men's singles. The high-jumping, hard-hitting Bach though had to contend with a strong drift and glaring stadium lighting in the first game. With the wind playing tricks with his clears and allowing Bouwmann midcourt smash opportunities and with play interrupted several times for adjustments to the portable court, Bach went down in the first game 12-15.

After the change of ends, it was Bouwmann this time who had the wind and the lighting going against him and it was Bach who came out on top in the second set 15-10.

In the decider, Bouwmann capitalized again on the light, the drift and a slightly suspect backhand short-serve. He quickly raced to a big lead and went into the mid-game change of ends ahead 8-0.

Bach roared back into the match, once he got on the good end. With the drift pushing Bouwmann's shots short and the lighting wreaking havoc on the Dutch player's timing, Bach caught up and even passed Bouwmann 9-8 and 10-9 with his crowd-pleasing high-leaping jumpsmashes, his fleet-footed dashes to and from the net and his deft net tumblers and lifts.

The huge comeback effort though must have sapped Bach's energy. After he had gotten his nose ahead, he fell into a spate of errors and miscues that allowed the Dutch player to take the game 15-10.

In the opening women's singles, the Netherland's Ginny Severien defeated Elie Wu 11-5 and 11-7 to give the Dutch a 2 match advantage.

In the second men's singles, the Dutch, who had come to Toronto expecting to play the customary 5 individual matches per team match and who had not brought another men's singles player, had to field a borrowed Canadian, Philip Bouret, against the U.S.A.'s Bob Malaythong. The American player had too many shots and was too quick for Bouret. Malaythong took the match 15-4 and 15-5 to put the Americans on the board.

Despite some difficult stretches in the first set, the Netherland's Maartje Van De Wal then gave the Dutch a commanding 3-1 advantage when she defeated Bonnie Wong 11-9 and 11-0.

In the mixed doubles that followed, Malaythong teamed up with Casey Peters to do battle with Joely Residay and Melissa Trouerbach. The American pair had a good-sized lead early behind Malaythong's sizzling smashes and drives either directly to Trouerbach or to a spot between the two Dutch players and also behind Peter's good net play.

The more experienced Trouerbach though soon figured out how to play the robustly-built Peters at the net. The Dutch pair began to send more and more crosscourt shots at the net and the midcourt, often catching Peters out of position or a racket swing too slow and forcing Malaythong into tiring diving saves and retrieves.

After many interruptions to adjust the portable court, Residay and Trouerbach took the first game 15-13. In the second set, the Dutch pair played much the same strategy and won 15-9.

The Residay-Trouerbach mixed doubles victory had clinched the team match for Netherland.

Severien and Trouerbach then combined in the women's doubles to trounce the U.S.A.'s Bonnie Wong and Amy Nguy 15-4 and 15-3.

In the finale of the evening - the men's doubles, Bach and lefthander Ryan Miglin outplayed Residay and Paul Kalterstaart 15-7 and 15-11 to give the U.S.A. its second win.

Tonight, Netherland and host Canada will do battle for the right to hold the Friendship Cup. Canada had beaten the U.S.A. on Friday night to win the Canada-U.S.A. dual meet and to retain the Devlin Cup. They also went one leg up in the Friendship Cup triangular meet between themselves, Netherland and the U.S.A..


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