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  1. #1
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    Post Zhang Jun / Gao Ling not afraid of Korean

    we need to retain our Olympics gold - Zhang Jun and Gao Ling not afraid of Koreans.

    Eastern Sports Daily – 11/12/2003 ()

    Losing to all Korean opponent is a curse that the Chinese Soccer team cannot break, the Chinese mixed badminton pairing also fell into the same curse after the World Championship in 2003. in all the Grand Prix events for the past 3 months, including the World Championship, the top Chinese mixed doubles pairing of Zhang Jun and Gao Ling has lost to the golden Korean pairing for Kim Dong Moon and Ra Kyeung Min seven times. However, they are not fear of them, “we are the only pair in the world who can be a threat to the Koreans.” They both thinks, “we will retain our Olympics title next year.”

    Gao Ling is behind in skills

    Since Kim/Ra has foregone the Chinese Open, Zhang Jun / Gao Ling are now the favorite to win the event. Zhang Jun partnering with Chen Qiqiu easily beat an Australian pair yesterday afternoon. “Today is for warming up and familiarizing with the arena, “Zhang told reporters on the way out of the arena. For the mixed event today, Zhang thinks, “They (Kim/Ra) are not coming here, we will fight for the championship, we will regain our confidence from beating others.” Zhang said without reserve when asked about the seven losing streak.

    Unlike the rest of us who worries about them, losing seven times doesn’t give Zhang any pressure. “There are only a few pairings in the world who can threaten them. Our goal is very clear, first we need to fight hard to threaten them until we can beat them.” Gao on the other hand is more optimistic, with a smile she says, “we partner very well! This only means we are playing better and better, we used to lose earlier in the tournaments, now we consistently play till the final.” As for the absence of Kim/Ra in the China Open, Zhang joking said with a little bit of sarcasm, “they must think the Chinese line judge cheat like the Koreans one, so they are afraid to come!” however, she does honestly admit their difference in skills, “I lack the fast pace and delicate techniques when compared to Kim.” Gao admits that Zhang is already trying his best, “Zhang Jun isn’t as tall as Kim, he needs to make it up by speed and strength.” Losing successively let them discover their deficiencies. “we lack in skills, so we need to recap every time we lose, “ Gao said in honesty. On top of that, inconsistency is also another problem, “someone we relax too much after a few good shots, we couldn’t keep up the good performance,” analyzed Zhang.

    Retaining Gold Medal is not a dream

    Zhang Jun and Gao Ling has beaten Kim / Ra 3 times since 2000, in the 2000 Olympics, 2001 World Championships, and 2003 Japan Open. “They are a top pair, we use to play them 3 times a year, however, the past half a year we met them seven times in the finals. Their overall strength is above us, especially the furious attack, if they are behind, they stay calm, this is what we are lacking.” As for the 3 victories against them, Gao Ling recall, “in 2000, we were unknowns, they already considered the Gold medal theirs, when we started leading, they were very confused. In fact it was similar in the World Championships, we narrowly won with a margin of one point.” Gao Ling concluded, “the more we lose, the more confident they are. When we reach a big tournament like the Olympics, they have more pressure than us. We are just handing the heavy baggage to them.” Zhang / Gao are not worried about the seven losing streak, they are confidence they will break the losing trend. As for when, Gao Ling said confidenly, “the Olympics! We can definitely retain our title.”

  2. #2
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    Wow they sure had a lot to say. Too bad there aren't more articles with the players speaking so openly about their opponents, themselves, and strategies. Or perhaps there are and I just don't get to read any of them hehe. It would be interesting to hear the other side of the story if the Korean mixed pair had a similar interview.

  3. #3
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    Yeah, and too bad they're gonna get thrashed...


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