Saturday, July 21, 2007

Clark and Kellogg go down bravely in China Masters


World silver medallists Anthony Clark and Donna Kellogg missed out in the mixed doubles final of the China Masters. The England pair lost to Zheng Bo and Gao Ling, just as they had in the Yonex All England final in March.

Clark and Kellogg, who lost in three games in the Birmingham final, went down in two games today, losing 21-16 21-17.

Zheng and Gao had beaten world champions Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms in the semi-finals to follow up their quarter-final win over them in Birmingham.

China won four of the five titles in Chengdu with only the women's doubles eluding them.


Hopes of an all-English mixed doubles final at the China Masters in Chengdu were dashed today. But instead there is a revenge match between the Yonex All England finalists.

World champions and top seeds Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms lost their contest against a third consecutive Chinese pair when they went down to Zheng Bo and Gao Ling 21-18 21-12.

But seventh seeds Anthony Clark and Donna Kellogg, the world runners-up and national champions, beat 2005 world champions and fourth seeds Lilyana Natsir and Nova Widianto of Indonesia 21-18 21-18.

That sets up a Sunday final against Zheng and Gao, the pair who beat them in the Yonex All England final in March.

England's hopes of another pair in the finals day action were dashed when seventh seeds Emms and Kellogg, the European champions, lost to fifth seeds Zhao Tingting and Yang Wei of China 21-9 21-16.


WORLD champions Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms and national title-holders Anthony Clark and Donna Kellogg are through to the semi-finals of the mixed doubles at the China Masters in Chengdu.

In today’s quarter-finals top seeds and world No 1s Robertson and Emms beat sixth seeds He Hanbin and Yu Yang 21-18 20-22 21-14. They now meet a third consecutive Chinese pair in Yonex All England champions Zheng Bo and Gao Ling.

The Athens silver medalists beat Olympic rival Zhang Jun in the second round. They now meet his Olympic gold medal partner Gao Ling in the semi-finals.

Seventh seeds Clark and Kellogg had to come from a game down against second seeds Xie Xhongbo and Zhang Yawen before winning their quarter-final 10-21 21-18 21-17. They now face fourth seeds and 2005 world champions Nova Widianto and Lilyana Natsir in tomorrow’s semi-finals.

England are still in contention in the women’s doubles where Emms and Kellogg won their quarter-final against Lena Frier Kristiansen and Kamilla Juhl of Denmark 21-23 21-16 21-14.

And the big news on the singles front is the return of Commonwealth champion Tracey Hallam to the world's top 20 for the first time since her autumn ankle operation. She is back in at No 18.

Mixed doubles quarter-finals:

{1} Nathan Robertson & Gail Emms (Eng) bt (6) He Hanbin & Yu Yang (Chn) 21-18 20-22 21-14

{3} Zheng Bo & Gao Ling (Chn) bt {8} Thomas Laybourn & Kamilla Juhl (Den) 22-20 21-19

{4) Nova Widianto & Lilyana Natsir (Ina) bt {5} Sudket Prapakamol & Saralee Thoungthongkam (Tha) 21-17 21-16

{7} Anthony Clark & Donna Kellogg (Eng) bt {2} Xie Xhongbo & Zhang Yawen (Chn} 10-21 21-18 21-17


Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms were again among the early winners as the China Masters moved into day two.

The world No 1s beat old Olympic rival Zhang Jun and new partner Zhao Tingting 21-16 21-6 to sweep into the quarter-finals. There they will face Chinese sixth seeds He Hanbin and Yu Yang - and to win the title there is a possibility of Chinese opposition for the rest of the tournament with Yonex All England champions Zheng Bo and Gao Ling possible semi-final opponents and second seeds Xie Zhongbo and Zhang Yawen bidding to come through from the bottom half of the draw.

But world runners-up Anthony Clark and Donna Kellogg will have something to say about that.

They are very much in contention in the bottom half, although they had to survive a nail-biter against Polish pair Robert Mateusiak and Nadiezda Kostiucyk before winning 21-10 15-21 24-22 in today's second round.

Emms and Kellogg are also through to the quarter-finals in the women's doubles after beating Indonesia's Endang Nurusgianti and Rani Mundiasti in straight games.

They will play the winner of the second-round clash between Flandy Limpele and Vita Marissa and Xie and Zhang.

A repeat of Clark and Kellogg's All-England form could well see them coming through from the bottom half.

England had a third pair through to the second round in Kristian Roebuck and Natalie Munt, who put up a spirited display in the first game against eighth seeds Thomas Laybourn and Kamilla Juhl before the Danes pulled away to win 21-17 21-11.


WORLD champions Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms were taken to three games in the opening round of the China Masters today before avenging their European Championship defeat by German pair Kristof Hopp and Birgit Overzier.

The England pair, back on top of the world rankings, came back to win 15-21 21-11 21-7 on day one proper of this seventh Super Series event.

Emms and European championship winning partner Donna Kellogg benefited from a walkover in the women's doubles first round.

But there was disappointment for England's world top 20 star Andrew Smith (pictured), who fell in straight games to third seed Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia.

And there was double disappointment for world silver medallist Robert Blair. He and Anthony Clark fell in the men's doubles first round against China's double Olympic mixed champion Zhang Jun and partner Zheng Bo.

Then Blair and Scotland's Imogen Bankier lost in three tight games to Kristian Roebuck and Blair's former partner Natalie Munt, falling 22-20 in the decider.

Commonwealth women's singles champion Tracey Hallam was among the England squad members playing matches later in the evening on day one but she was unlucky enough to run up against China's eighth seed Lu Lan and went down in a tough three-setter 21-13 19-21 21-14.

Another big evening clash was the contest between seventh seeds and world runners-up Clark and Kellogg against team-mates David Lindley and Suzanne Rayappan. The national champions won in straight games but it was close in the second with Clark and Kellogg going through 21-14 23-21.

No comments: