Korean women's duo Lee Hyojung and Lee Kyungwon, the world's No. 4, beat Japanese dark horses in Beijing on Wednesday to enter the final game of badminton tournament at the Beijing Olympic Games.
The two Lees won the victory over Maeda Miyukui and Suetsuna Satoko at 22-20, 21-15.
The Japanese were very close to win the first game when they reached 20-18. However, the two Lees were persistent and didn't give up, making four points in a row to end the first game at 22-20.
The two Lees had been taking the lead in the second game and won a smooth victory.
"The Japanese defense was very strong but we did not lose confidence. We expected the Japanese would be no match for us," said Lee Hyojung.
Maeda and Suetsuna beat Yang Wei and Zhang Jiewen from China, the champions at the Athens Olympic Games, in the quarterfinals, becoming the dark horses at the Beijing Games.
"At the 12th point in the second game, we lost our concentration and the match went on a long time. It broke our rhythm," Maeda Miyukui said after the match.
Lee Hyojun said they would prepare themselves by analyzing video footage of the performance of their Chinese rivals in the final game, namely Du Jing/Yu Yang or Zhang Yawen/Wei Yili.
"We cannot predict who we will meet in the next round but we would prefer to play the Du and Yu because they are very young and in the All-England we beat them," said Lee Hyojun.
Du is 24 while Yu 22.
(Xinhua News Agency August 13, 2008 )