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Reigning champ China rolls into Uber Cup final
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National coach Li said that despite unexpectedly dropping the doubles rubber, he was pleased.

"Despite having lost a couple of games, my players still have a lot of confidence in themselves," he said.

"Some countries like Nigeria, Canada and the United States are not expected to win so they have no pressure, but for us, where there are very high expectations that we will win, it is natural for us to feel the pressure.

"The players we have at this tournament are young, it is the first time for many of them. I feel it is a very crucial and important training process for them to come here and go through this sort of pressure."

China will meet either host Indonesia or surprise package Germany in Saturday's final, with those two teams playing later yesterday.

Li added that all he asked from his players was that they tried their best.

"I am very pleased with them," he said.

The men's Thomas Cup semis are an all-Asian affair and will be played today.

China is aiming for its third straight title and takes on South Korea, which is striving to land the prestigious trophy for the first time.

In the other semifinal, 13-time champion Indonesia is up against Malaysia.

(Agencies via China Daily May 16, 2008)

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