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September 23, 2000
China dominate badminton, TTScott McDonald
China won two more badminton golds at the Sydney Olympics on Saturday.
China also put a lock on another gold after brushing aside Singapore and Taiwan in table tennis.
China's latest badminton gold went to seventh seed Ji Xinpeng in the men's singles final in a 15-4, 15-13 upset victory over number two seed Henderawan of Indonesia.
After an easy first game, the classy Ji fought back from 4-9 down, then again at 10-13, winning the last five points in front of a rowdy, near-capacity crowd.
He seized the game impressively, slamming in skilled overhead smashes down the sideline.
Ji started slowly but clawed his way back into control against the experienced Hendrawan, who uncharacteristically made several unforced errors at the net in an otherwise high-quality contest.
Ji, who lost to Hendrawan when they met in the 2000 Thomas Cup finals teams event in May, dominated the opening game, racing to a 10-3 lead.
The second gold came from Ge Fei and Gu Jun, the defending Olympic champions, who beat compatriots Gao Ling and Qin Yiyuan in just 35 minutes in the women's doubles final
It was China's fourth badminton gold after the women's singles and mixed doubles titles.
Indonesia won the men's doubles title.
China are also assured of winning the men's table tennis doubles where Wang Liqin and Yan Sen face Kong Linghui and Liu Guoliang.
Another guaranteed gold will be picked up on Sunday to add to the 15 won in the first week of the Olympics after victories by Li Ju over Singapore's Jing Jun Hong and Wang Nan over Chen Jing of Taiwan in the semifinals of the women's table tennis singles.
China also picked up a silver on Saturday in women's synchronised three-metre springboard diving with Fu Mingxia and Guo Jingjing, who were edged out of the gold by Russia's Vera Ilyina and Yulia Pakhalina.
Fu is returning to Olympic competition after retiring when she won the highboard and three-metre springboard competitions in Atlanta. She also she won the platform gold in Barcelona.
''We tried very hard to catch up but we couldn't do it,'' said Fu.
Thailand's golden boxing hero from Atlanta, Somluck Kamsing, moved into the featherwieght quarter-finals after beating Uzbekistan's Tulkunbay Turgunov.
His team mate Pornchai Thongburan also advanced by beating Hungarian Karoly Balzsay on points in the light-middleweight division.
South Korea kept its baseball playoff hopes alive with a 7-6 extra-inning win over Japan.
Korea are now likely for the semifinals. Japan had already qualified.
Japan's women swimmers -- Mai Nakamura, Masami Tanaka, Junko Onishi and Sumika Minamoto -- won a bronze in the women's 4x100 medley relay behind the United States and Australia.
The news was not as good for Asia's fastest male and female sprinters, who failed to qualify for their 100 metre finals.
Japan's Koji Ito finished in seventh place in his semifinal in a time of 10.39 seconds, and Sri Lanka's Susanthika Jayasinghe was also seventh in her heat in 11.33 seconds.
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