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Will Malaysia's Olympics gold drought end Sunday?

LONDON, Aug 3 (Bernama) -- Will Malaysia's Olympics gold medal drought end this Sunday?. The answer to Malaysia's long awaited gold medal for the country in an Olympics most likely lies on the shoulders of national shuttler Datuk Lee Chong Wei who has qualified for the men's singles final of the badminton competition at the ongoing London Olympics here.

Trailing in his footsteps are Malaysia's men's doubles pair Koo Kean Keat and Tan Boon Heong, ranked eight in the world, who will also be in contention to do the same in the badminton competition if they prevail in their semifinal encounter tomorrow.

Chong Wei, the world number two and the top seed of the tournament, beat Cheng Long of China 21-13, 21-14 in 54 minutes in today's semifinals of the London Olympics badminton competition at the Wembley Arena here.

He will be facing his arch nemesis and defending champion Lin Dan of China in the final this Sunday.

Lin Dan defeated Lee Hyun Il of South Korea 21-12, 21-10 in 39 minutes in the other semis Sunday's clash of the titans will be repeat of the 2008 Beijing Olympics in which Chong Wei had to play bridesmaid to the man called Super Dan.

In Beijing four years ago, Lin Dan beat Chong Wei 21-12, 21-8 in the final.

Meanwhile, national archer Khairul Anuar Mohamad, who is making his Olympics debut, missed a semifinal slot after he bowed out 2-6 to Takaharu Furukawa of Japan in the quarterfinals of the Men's Recurve Individual event at the Lord's Cricket Ground here.

Strong winds at the venue affected Khairul Anuar's concentration besides having to contend with Furukawa, who has seen Olympics action three times.

However, the world number 20 can take comfort in knowing that he equalled his senior Cheng Chu Sian's achievement in the 2008 Beijing Olympics as both the Malaysians became stranded at the quarter-final stage.

Earlier in the day, he had beaten three times Olympian, Larry Godfrey of Britain 6-5, after collecting a bulls-eye, 10 points, in the shoot-off when both archers were tied with 136-136 points in the five ends, to make the quarterfinals.

At the London Velodrome, national cyclist Fatehah Mustafa had an early exit from the Games when she failed to be among the top three riders in the Women's Keirin first round repechages event.

Fatehah only managed fifth spot out of the six riders competing in Heat 2. Only the top three riders in each heat qualify for the next round.

Tomorrow, Day Eight of the Games, the focus will be at the Wembley Arena when national doubles pair Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong take on world number two pair CaiYun/Fu Haifeng of China in the semifinals of the badminton men's doubles competition.

The last time a Malaysian men's pair saw semifinal action in this event was when Choong Tan Fook/Lee Wan Wah reached that stage in the Sydney Olympics in 2000.

Also tomorrow, Cheong Jun Hoong and Ng Yan Yee will be in action in the semifinals of the women's 3m springboard diving event at the London Aquatics centre while 'Pocket Rocketman' Mohd Azizulhasni Awang will do battle in the cycling sprint event.

Elsewhere, Khairulnizam Mohd Afendy will be competing the the men's Dinghy individual event in the waters of Weymouth and Portland.

 

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