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Courtship stirring interest
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Their sport requires the most delicate of touches and their romantic liaisons are used by governing officials to promote it.

Now badminton's hottest pairs both on and off court are getting ready to test their passion in the spotlight of the Olympics.

Lin Dan and Xie Xing Fang (China)

Lin Dan(L) and Xie Xingfang in this file photo undated. [China Daily]

Xie Xingfang and Lin Dan, currently ranked world No. 1 in women's and men's singles respectly, are the most eye-catching couple on the badminton court right now.

Lin is currently the most dominant singles player in the world. Since 2004, he has been ranked No.1 for two years and won many tournaments.

His romantic relationship with Xie emerged at the Thomas and Uber Cup in 2004, when they were pictured kissing.

They both won titles at the 2006 World Championship and 2007 All England titles. Now they are China's biggest hopes at the Beijing Games.

Gei Fei and Sun Jun (China)

Gei Fei(L)and Sun Jun in this file photo undated. [Sohu.com]

Gei Fei and her partner Gu Jun used to dominate the world of women's doubles.

At the 1996 Atlanta Games, they claimed the first Olympic gold medal for the Chinese badminton team.

Ge married men's singles player Sun Jun after the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. Sun was the main force of China's men's team after winning a series of international titles, including the 1998 All England, 1997 World Cup and Grand Prix Finals.

The couple from Jiangsu province wrapped up their sporting career with a mixed gold at the Ninth National Games in 2001.

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