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Commonwealth Games 2010: England lose badminton finals

Nathan Robertson

England defeated in badminton finals (UK only)

England ended a Commonwealth badminton tournament with no gold medals for the first time after three final defeats at the hands of Malaysia on Thursday.

Nathan Robertson and Jenny Wallwork lost 22-20 21-12 to Koo Kien Keat and Chin Eei Hui in the mixed doubles.

Rajiv Ouseph, seeking England's first men's singles title since 1986, went down 21-10 21-8 to classy defending champion Lee Chong Wei.

Robertson and Anthony Clark then lost their men's doubles final 21-19 21-14.

Again, Malaysian opponents Koo and Tan Boon Heong, the world number one pairing, proved to be of a different class.

Robertson, who won a Games title four years ago with Gail Emms, had only two hours to regroup between his two finals.

English competitors had previously won at least one gold medal in every Commonwealth badminton tournament since the sport was introduced to the Games in 1966.

At the 2006 Games in Melbourne, England won both the mixed doubles and women's singles titles.

But dominant Malaysia, whose badminton players reached four of Thursday's five finals, put paid to English hopes of maintaining that run in Delhi.

In the mixed doubles, Robertson and Wallwork raced into a 5-0 lead in the first game before their opponents responded.

They pulled level at 11-11 and maintained their momentum to take a three-point lead at 16-13.

The English pair fought back to 20-20, but were undone when Robertson put a smash into the net.

It was one-way Malaysian traffic from there, and the unseeded duo took the second game 21-12 for a surprisingly comfortable victory.

Ouseph settled for men's singles silver as world number one Lee made his way to a comfortable gold medal in just 26 minutes.

The English 24-year-old took an early lead but the gulf between the pair soon became apparent.

Hosts India celebrated their first women's badminton gold as second seeds Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Machimanda triumphed in the doubles final.

They overcame Singapore pair Shinta Mula Sari and Yao Lei 21-16 21-19.

Play was briefly halted in the closing stages as the top seeds protested that a 'let' should have been called on the hosts' serve as they were not ready, but the umpire ruled in favour of the Indians to put them 19-18 ahead.

India did not have to wait long for a second gold medal to celebrate, as Saina Nehwal shouldered the responsibility of winning women's singles gold to take India past England in the overall medals table.

Nehwal battled back from match point down to defeat Malaysia's Wong Mew Choo 19-21 23-21 21-13.



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see also
India beat England to second spot
14 Oct 10 |  Commonwealth Games
Robertson and Wallwork into final
12 Oct 10 |  Commonwealth Games
Commonwealth Games photos
14 Oct 10 |  Commonwealth Games
Robertson reveals his poker face
13 Apr 10 |  Badminton


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