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China Wins 3 Golds in Badminton, Weightlifting
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China get its 14th gold medals at the ongoing summer Olympics in Athens when Zhang Jun/Gao Ling beat a British pair in the women's badminton mixed doubles Thursday.

Defending champions defend championship

Mixed doubles defending champions Zhang Jun/Gao Ling didn't let the chance slip away from their grip after South Korean top seeds fell in quarter-finals, by defeating Robertson/Emms from Britain 15-1, 12-15, 15-12 on Thursday.

Zhang Jun/Gao Ling returned to Robertson/Emms from Britain during the badminton mixed doubles final August 19. Zhang/Gao won the match 15-1, 12-15, 15-12 to lay hands on the gold medal. [Xinhua]

Zhang/Gao, No.2 seed in the Olympic badminton tournament, found no difficulties to crush the 4th seeds 15-1 in the first set.

The favorites for the mixed doubles gold after invincible Kim Dong Moon/Ra Kyung Min were kicked out in quarter-finals, however, met stern resistance from the British pair in Goudi Olympic Hall filled with shout and applause of European spectators, and surrendered in the second set 12-15.

In the third set, Zhang/Gao survived great pressure imposed by their opponents and the crowd, catching the winning chance 15-12 at last and the second gold for Chinese national badminton team.

Women's 69kg weightlifting

Earlier, Liu Chunhong claimed the women's 69kg weightlifting gold and Zhang Ning laid hands on the gold of women's badminton singles.

Liu Chunhong lifted 275kg in total, 122.5 in snatch to claim the gold medal of the women's 69kg weightlifting August 19, 2004. [Xinhua]

Liu snatched 122. 5kg to set a new world record, surpassing her own world record by 2.5kg set in the world championships in Vancouver, Canada las year.

Liu lifted 275kg in total, also a new world record.

Women's badminton singles final

Zhang Ning beat Indonesian-born Mia Audina of the Netherlands 8-11 11-6 11-7 to give China the first gold medal of the Olympic badminton tournament on Thursday.

Audina, who played for Indonesia before marrying a Dutch gospel singer and moving to Europe, fought her heart out + saving two match points before having to settle for the second silver of her career.

Zhang Ning of China celebrated her 2-1 victory over Mia Audina of the Netherlands in women's badminton single's final August 19, 2004. The bronze went to Zhou Mi.[Xinhua]

She finished runner-up for Indonesia as a 16-year-old prodigy at the 1996 Atlanta Games.

China's Zhou Mi took the bronze medal after beating compatriot and world number one Gong Ruina 11-2 8-11 11-6 in an earlier playoff.

Zhang hurled her racket high in the air after hitting the winning smash at the net and raced around the court to embrace her jubilant coach as Audina bowed her head.

It was a first ever badminton medal for the Dutch.

(China Daily and Xinhua News Agency August 20, 2004)


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