Xie Xingfang, the world's No. 1 and top seed of the badminton tournament at the Beijing Olympic Games, entered the women's singles semifinals on Wednesday by beating Xu Huaiwen from Germany.
The two fought a hard war against each other and Xie finally won 21-19, 22-20. The two games lasted 53 minutes, while the longest rally had a rare 49 strokes.
"I could hardly stand the match, but she must be even worse," said Xie. Xie is 27, six years younger than Xu.
"Xu became impatient when at 21-20 in the second game and she lost it when she tried to attack," Xie said.
Xie had never lost to Xu before the Beijing Olympic Games.
Xu, on her part, was a little disappointed after the defeat, but admitted "Xie is a little bit stronger than me. My strength and speed reduced a lot in the second game, so I had less attacks."
Xu said she was very focused on the Olympic Games and had prepared a long time for it.
She added she planned to retire after the World Championships next year.
(Xinhua News Agency August 13, 2008 )