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September 19, 2000
Defending champion retires after lossMitch Phillips
Defending Olympic men's singles champion Poul-Erik Hoyer-Larsen announced his retirement from top class international badminton on Monday after losing to Chinese world champion Sun Jun in the first round.
Hoyer-Larsen, seeded six, went down 15-3 16-17 15-10 in a thriller and said he was sad to have lost though happy that he battled back.
"That's one of the things I'm known for so although it's sad to go out in the first round, I'm glad I put up a fight," said the 34-year-old.
"But it's time to start a new life."
The popular Dane will make his farewell in front of his home crowd at the Danish Open later in the year.
Meanwhile at the Games, the new generation represented by 19-year-old Indonesian number one seed Taufik Hidayat was pushed hard by unseeded Japanese player Hidetaka Yamada before emerging a 15-5 14-17 15-8 winner.
Fourth seed Xuanze Xia of China also needed three sets to get past another unseeded Japanese player, Keita Masuda, winning 15-4 12-15 15-8 but all the seeds apart from Hoyer-Larsen went through.
In the women's singles number seven Lee Kyung-Won of South Korea was the only one of the eight seeds who failed to reach the quarter-finals after losing 11-9 11-6 to Chia Chi Huang of Taiwan.
Simon Archer and Jo Goode became the first British players ever to reach an Olympic badminton semi-final when they beat Chris Bruil and Erica van den Heuvel of the Netherlands 15-12 15-12 in the mixed doubles.
"I don't want a bronze, not now," said Archer, who lost in the men's doubles quarter-finals earlier in the day.
After dominating the first set, the Britons trailed 11-5 in the second but expert serving by Goode and some delicate play by the tall Archer dragged it back.
Badminton has been in the Olympics since 1992 with mixed doubles being added in 1996. Denmark is the only non-Asian country to have medalled, winning four, including one gold.
In the semi-final the Britons will play top-seeded Tri Kusharyanto and Minarti Timur of Indonesia who beat Denmark's Jens Eriksen and Mette Schjoldager 15-3 15-8.
Denmark will be represented in the last four however, when European champions Michael Sogaard and Rikke Olsen meet China's Jun Zhang and Ling Gao.
The Danes beat Indonesia's Bambang Suprianto and Zelin Resiana 17-14 10-15 15-11 while the Chinese rolled over second-seeded South Korean pair Kim Dong-Moon and Ra Kyung-Min 15-11 15-1.
In the men's doubles South Koreans Lee Dong-soo and Yoo Yong-sung beat Denmark's Jens Eriksen and Jesper Larsen in a fiery quarter-final.
The Danish pair, Larsen in particular, were warned several times by female Thai umpire Nahathai Sornprachum for excessive shouting while the Danes in turn complained that their opponents were trying to influence the line judges with their own shouting.
It made for tense viewing as Olsen greeted each success with an aggressive shout of what sounded like mimicry of the Koreans' celebration call, staring down his opponents as he did so.
In the end though it could not prevent a Korean 15-12 15-10 victory.
The Koreans will now face Tan Fook Choong and Wan Wah Lee in the semis after the Malaysians beat Indonesians Eng Hian and Flandy Limpele 15-10 15-9.
Top seeds and world number one pairing Tony Gunawan and Candra Wijaya beat British pair Archer and Nathan Robertson 15-13 15-11 to set up a semi-final meeting with South Korean world champions Ha Tae-kwon and Kim Dong-moon. They eased past Indonesians Ricky Ahmad Subagja and Rexy Mainaky 15-5 15-9.
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