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  1. #1
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    Default Yang Yang Corner

    It was 1989 at the World Championships and the finalists were Yang Yang and Ardy Wiranata. Yang Yang, a player touted for his level of consistency and shot accuracy coupled with light footwork, came into China's limelight during the period where Han Jian was on his way to retirement.

    Having won the 1987 World Championship against Morten Frost in Beijing, this was his 2nd World Championship final. To make matters worst, the 1989 WC was held in Jakarta and the crowd was all gung-ho with support for Ardy.

    Ardy shot to a 8-0 lead in the first game. The then 19 year old Ardy used his good court coverage and half court smashes with deadly deftness, but 26 year old Yang Yang held his cool and composure to take the first set 15-10.

    The 2nd set saw Ardy played even faster and using his half smashes more to both left and right of Yang Yang's mid-court. At 10-2, Yang Yang still held his cool. Unbeknownst to Ardy, Yang Yang was already making mental plans for the 3rd game. Yang Yang had already decided to let the 2nd game go. His plan for the 2nd game was to tire out Ardy, virtually giving Ardy all high serves to the baseline. Ardy gave Yang Yang a 15-2, virtually unheard of in Yang Yang's career.

    In the 3rd game, this was where Yang Yang changed his tactic, using all low serves to deny Ardy from using his half smashes. And when Ardy proceeded to continue with his arsenal of half smashes during a rally, he was surprise that his smashes were all returned cross court back to his baseline. Yang Yang kept pushing Ardy to his baseline and forced him to cover the diagonal length of the full court (running from right baseline corner to left front court and vice versa) when Yang Yang suddenly flick to the net corners. With Yang Yang guarding his front netting when Ardy tried to play net tightly, the latter was surprise to find his tight net shots being pounced upon by Yang Yang. Ardy had no clue how to play the 3 set except to continue with his game plan to outrun and outmaneuver Yang Yang. The game was over quite shortly arriving at 15-5 in Yang Yang's favour. Although Yang Yang's shirt was fully drenched and soaked, he was never panting for air playing the younger 19 yr old Ardy.

    Footnote: The way Yang Yang holds or grips his racket is quite unorthodox as I find that no other player swings the racket like him. To the outsider, his swing of the racket head looks so easy and without power (as compared to the crazy contorted faces of LD before a powerful smash) but his power is great nonetheless. Till this day, I find no other player that comes close to replicate his style of stroke, except for Yong Hock Kin, Yang Yang's former prodigy. I would say Yong's movement copycats Yang Yang's, but nowhere near Yang Yang's power.

  2. #2
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    Good write up but need a lot of imagination... Especially the holding racquets part as comparison to kin dan

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    If not for Zhao Jianhua, Yang Yang would shine supreme in his time. I recall reading somewhere that Yang Yang used to train with weights tied round his legs. In case you didn't know, Yang Yang was the winner in the men's singles when badminton was a demonstration sport at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul,Korea, before it became a medal sport in Barcelona,1992.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yang_Yang_(badminton)


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    Default Yang Yang Then and Now

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    It is said that a consistent athlete (whatever sport) who has been active at sports and then later stops abruptly will have a weight ballooning effect on the body's metabolism in comparison with a person who seldom or never exercises all his life. Is this true? Hhm... Well let's take a look at another player from Malaysia, Dato Ng Boon Bee shall we?

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    Dato Ng has already stopped his coaching activities at Ipoh Swimming Club. Time to call it a day and relax with wife. I just saw him having a hefty bak kut teh meal with his wife at Jalan Chung Thye Pin.

    How about 4times All England champ, Dato Eddy Choong? Still fit as ever. Small size athletes does have their perks, I guess.

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    Then there is another Malaysian who won 2 gold medals at the 1966 Commonwealth Games at two individual events, Tan Aik Huang.

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    Just like the rivalry between LD and LCW, during their time was the rivalry between Tan and Erland Kops and a few other Indons who were equally fed up of Tan's dominance.

    Razif Sidek, who clearly wants to be BAM's head coach.

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    Foo Kok Keong still looks fit as ever. The match where he vomitted after having a tough duel with iron man Xiong GuoBao is still to be applauded.

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    Last edited by Pakito; 12-27-2012 at 07:49 AM.

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    Dato Ng has already stopped his coaching activities at Ipoh Swimming Club. Time to call it a day and relax with wife. I just saw him having a hefty bak kut teh meal with his wife at Jalan Chung Thye Pin.

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    It's the 1989 All England, the ever consistent Yang Yang vs MFrost Hansen. Both have equally powerful smashes, but Yang Yang has the edge of deception more, making his smashes more lethal, or in financial terms, better ROI, return of investment. Can you see what is similar between Yang Yang and Zhao? Of course their execution of stroke varies between each other, but in terms of play, they have a very lethal habit. In badminton, the forehand overhead is one of the most use stroke of all. Yang Yang and Zhao has the same habit of having (individually different) the same likeness of execution, be it a lob, drop or a smash, so that their opponents do not know what's coming. You can see that Morten Frost who was once known as the 'king of lobs' is caught flat footed by Yang Yang's fast lobs. So this habit is very effective and make sure that you don't add in too many fancy movements, otherwise opponents will know what stroke mode is coming from you, sought of like having your tail wagging and be spotted right away. In other words, have a 'poker face body movement'. Yang Yang is fast, and certainly not known as a rudimentary attacking player, but very calculating and intuitive in court craft.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbUbuZuWIKw&NR=1



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    Quote Originally Posted by Pakito View Post
    It was 1989 at the World Championships and the finalists were Yang Yang and Ardy Wiranata. Yang Yang, a player touted for his level of consistency and shot accuracy coupled with light footwork, came into China's limelight during the period where Han Jian was on his way to retirement.

    Having won the 1987 World Championship against Morten Frost in Beijing, this was his 2nd World Championship final. To make matters worst, the 1989 WC was held in Jakarta and the crowd was all gung-ho with support for Ardy.

    Ardy shot to a 8-0 lead in the first game. The then 19 year old Ardy used his good court coverage and half court smashes with deadly deftness, but 26 year old Yang Yang held his cool and composure to take the first set 15-10.

    The 2nd set saw Ardy played even faster and using his half smashes more to both left and right of Yang Yang's mid-court. At 10-2, Yang Yang still held his cool. Unbeknownst to Ardy, Yang Yang was already making mental plans for the 3rd game. Yang Yang had already decided to let the 2nd game go. His plan for the 2nd game was to tire out Ardy, virtually giving Ardy all high serves to the baseline. Ardy gave Yang Yang a 15-2, virtually unheard of in Yang Yang's career.

    In the 3rd game, this was where Yang Yang changed his tactic, using all low serves to deny Ardy from using his half smashes. And when Ardy proceeded to continue with his arsenal of half smashes during a rally, he was surprise that his smashes were all returned cross court back to his baseline. Yang Yang kept pushing Ardy to his baseline and forced him to cover the diagonal length of the full court (running from right baseline corner to left front court and vice versa) when Yang Yang suddenly flick to the net corners. With Yang Yang guarding his front netting when Ardy tried to play net tightly, the latter was surprise to find his tight net shots being pounced upon by Yang Yang. Ardy had no clue how to play the 3 set except to continue with his game plan to outrun and outmaneuver Yang Yang. The game was over quite shortly arriving at 15-5 in Yang Yang's favour. Although Yang Yang's shirt was fully drenched and soaked, he was never panting for air playing the younger 19 yr old Ardy.

    Footnote: The way Yang Yang holds or grips his racket is quite unorthodox as I find that no other player swings the racket like him. To the outsider, his swing of the racket head looks so easy and without power (as compared to the crazy contorted faces of LD before a powerful smash) but his power is great nonetheless. Till this day, I find no other player that comes close to replicate his style of stroke, except for Yong Hock Kin, Yang Yang's former prodigy. I would say Yong's movement copycats Yang Yang's, but nowhere near Yang Yang's power.
    Nice excerpt .... I remember that match, I was there .....

    The result was tough on the Indonesian public and the PBSI .... having 3 players qualified for the semifinals and yet a China man won. So I suppose they redoubled their efforts and 3 years later, had 3 players in the Olympic semifinals and an all Indonesian final.

    But Ardy B Wiranata still lost ......

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pakito View Post
    It's the 1989 All England, the ever consistent Yang Yang vs MFrost Hansen. Both have equally powerful smashes, but Yang Yang has the edge of deception more, making his smashes more lethal, or in financial terms, better ROI, return of investment.

    It took Yang Yang quite a number of times and years before he could actually master Morten Frost. I remember the first 5 or 6 matches had always gone Frost's way, that I actually thought Yang Yang would never get the better of Frost .... no such problems for Zhao Jianhua, though.

    Yang Yang's big break was at the 1986 GP Finals in Malaysia, finally banishing Frost. And from then onwards - I think Frost never won again, although their 1987 WC Final was a great matchup.

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    Quote Originally Posted by abedeng View Post
    It took Yang Yang quite a number of times and years before he could actually master Morten Frost. I remember the first 5 or 6 matches had always gone Frost's way, that I actually thought Yang Yang would never get the better of Frost .... no such problems for Zhao Jianhua, though.

    Yang Yang's big break was at the 1986 GP Finals in Malaysia, finally banishing Frost. And from then onwards - I think Frost never won again, although their 1987 WC Final was a great matchup.
    It would have been great to watch those matches. It's a pity though, that we don't have the privilege to watch.

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    Thanks so much to Pakito and abedeng for sharing their reminiscences, esp for those of us who didn't have the good fortune to be there at the scene or watch it live on TV. What both of you've described read like an eyewitness account of badminton history in the making by two great predecessors, the electrifying,breathtaking atmosphere mirroring the intense rivalry between the fast rising emerging powerhouse CHN and the top established INA superpower at that time with DEN as usual represented then by the legendary Morten Frost leading the European charge as the sole challenger.
    Last edited by Justin L; 01-26-2013 at 02:58 AM.

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    The 1988 Hong Kong Open, one of the rare glimpses where Icuk defeated Yang Yang with steely display of determination and sheer ferocity of being on the offensive. It also rare that you see Yang Yang being annoyed with himself.


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    1990 Thomas Cup, Yang Yang though at the tail end of his playing days, still brimming with form. But one could see that his stamina was slightly deteriorated, taking longer time in between services to gasp for air.


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