Mon, March 15, 2010
Sports > Badminton

Chinese duo Zhang/Zhao win mixed doubles at All England Open

2010-03-15 02:55:27 GMT2010-03-15 10:55:27 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Zhang Nan (2nd R) and Zhao Yunlei of China celebrate on the podium after the mixed doubles final of 2010 All England Open Badminton Championships in Birmingham, Britain, March 14, 2010. Zhang and Zhao defeated Nova Widianto and Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia by 2-1. (Xinhua/Zeng Yi)

Zhang Nan (2nd R) and Zhao Yunlei of China celebrate after the mixed doubles final of 2010 All England Open Badminton Championships in Birmingham, Britain, March 14, 2010. Zhang and Zhao defeated Nova Widianto and Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia by 2-1. (Xinhua/Zeng Yi)

Zhang Nan (2nd R) and Zhao Yunlei(1st R) of China celebrate on the podium after the mixed doubles final of 2010 All England Open Badminton Championships in Birmingham, Britain, March 14, 2010. Zhang and Zhao defeated Nova Widianto and Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia by 2-1. (Xinhua/Zeng Yi)

Zhang Nan (1st R) and Zhao Yunlei of China celebrate after the mixed doubles final of 2010 All England Open Badminton Championships in Birmingham, Britain, March 14, 2010. Zhang and Zhao defeated Nova Widianto and Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia by 2-1. (Xinhua/Zeng Yi)

BIRMINGHAM, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Chinese pair Zhang Nan/Zhao Yuneli defeated Olympic runners-up Nova Widianto/Liliyana Natsir from Indonesia to clinch the title of mixed doubles at the 100th All England Open Badminton Championships here on Sunday.

All England Open debutants Zhang and Zhao fought through the qualification with two wins and astonishingly defeated two time world champions Widianto and Natsir in a tough final.

"This is the second time that we paired up to compete and every match was tough," said the 23-year-old Zhao, who also reached the women's doubles final with partner Cheng Shu. "We got nothing to lose. Actually, we were less skilful than our experienced rivals in the final, but we kept good mentality and has never given up whenever we were behind."

Zhang and Zhao trailed behind since 3:3 but managed to equal their seasoned rivals in 18-18. Then the new pair grabbed three points in a row , winning the first game in 21-18.

In the second game, the Chinese duo came from 10-5 behind to 10-10, but failed to grabbed the victory as Widianto and Natsir took one game back in 25-23 after equalling for 11 times with Zhang and Zhao.

Zhang and Zhao still struggled in the first half of the deciding game but managed to beat their rivals in 21-18.

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