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Tuesday, 23 July, 2002, 12:37 GMT 13:37 UK

Archer targets triple gold

Simon Archer goes into the Commonwealth Games aiming to win three gold medals just a year after it looked as though his career could be over because of injury.

Archer won Britain's first ever Olympic badminton medal when he clinched bronze in the mixed doubles in Sydney in 2000, but he then suffered a serious knee injury.

He was out of the game for the whole of 2001 and was only able to start full training two months ago, but is raring to go on home tuff.

"I'm trying to target three golds and it would be a fantastic feeling to do that on my own patch," said Archer.

"England and Malaysia are the strongest two teams here and that's not going to be the final"
English hope
Simon Archer

"I was out injured for so long and it has taken me 12 months just to start playing well again.

"For me to come back and do well here after an injury which threatened to end my career would mean everything to me."

Archer admitted that failing to reach the Olympic final was a big blow, and he and partner Jo Goode did not speak to each other for 24 hours following their semi-final defeat.

"I had wanted an Olympic medal since I was a little kid but unfortunately we missed the chance of silver or gold so it was very hard," said Archer.

Archer is determined to go all the way this time but he is angry that England have been paired with badminton powerhouse Malaysia in the first round.

That means one of the most fancied teams in the event will not win a medal and Archer has described the decision to seed Malaysia as low as fifth as "disgraceful".

"How they can be seeded five when they won men's gold last time and silver in the ladies is quite a bizarre situation really. I'd like someone to explain it.

"Clearly on paper, regardless of the seedings, England and Malaysia are the strongest two teams here and that's not going to be the final - and that's bad for badminton"


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