Monday, May 18, 2009
Chinese team who wins 2009 Sudirman Cup
Guangzhou (5/17) - China won their seventh Sudirman Cup after crushing Korea 3-0. China never lost even 1 point from the qualifying group to the final.
Korean number one Lee Yong-dae and Lee Hyo-jung played against Chinese Zheng Bo and Yu Yang. The Chinese pair never played together before. Zheng had been Ma Jin's partner and Yu was He Hanbin's partner. Because He/Yu often lost to Lee Yong-dae/Lee Hyo-jung, Chinese coach Li Yongbo changed Yu's partner.
In the first game, the Korean mixed doubles won 21-18. Zheng/Yu gained the second game with the score 21-19 as Lee Hyo-jung created many mistakes. In fact, Lee/Lee could have won the second game when they led 18-17.
The 2008 Olympic gold-medalists' performance decreased in the third set. They lost 16-21. This match was the longest match of the 2009 Sudirman Cup final matches. Lee Yong-dae and Lee Hyo-jung failed to give Korea 1 point after losing 21-18, 19-21, and 16-21 in 1 hour 12 minutes.
In the men's singles match, world number three Lin Dan subdued Korea's Park Sung-hwan easily in straight sets, 21-14 and 21-18. Lin Dan had been predicted to win for China in this match. China led 2-0.
Lee Yong-dae, now pairing with Jung Jae-sung in men's doubles, played in the very determining match. If they won, Korea could chase China. If they lost, China would have Sudirman Cup quickly by winning 3-0.
Lee Yong-dae returns a shot
However, Lee Yong-dae was tired after playing in the mixed doubles. The former world number one pair was downed 14-21 by seventh-ranked Cai Yun/Fu Haifeng. In the second game, Lee Yong-dae/Jung Jae Sung improved and won 21-17. Finally, Cai/Fu beat Lee/Jung 21-19.
China 3-0 Korea
Zheng Bo/Yu Yang def. Lee Yong-dae/Lee Hy0-jung 18-21, 21-19, 21-16
Lin Dan def. Park Sung-hwan 21-14, 21-18
Cai Yun/Fu Haifeng def. Lee Yong-dae/Jung Jae-sung 21-14, 17-21, 21-19
Wang Yihan vs. Hwang Hye-youn
Yu Yang/Du Jing vs. Lee Hyo-jung/Lee Kyung-won
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Roger Federer poses with ball boys and ball girls
Madrid (5/17) - Swiss star Roger Federer won his first title of 2009 after downing world number one Rafael Nadal in straight sets 6-4 and 6-4. The match only lasted in 1 hour and 26 minutes. It is Federer's 15th Masters title and ends his title drought since Basel 2008.
Federer returns a shot to Rafael Nadal
This victory stops Nadal's 33 successive wins in clay. It repeated 27-year-old Federer's win in 2007 Hamburg final where he crushed the Spaniard in three sets.
Federer poses with Spain Prince Felipe after winning Madrid Open
Earlier, in the women's final, Dinara Safina proved her quality as the world no. 1 by a 6-2, 6-4 win over Danish Caroline Wozniacki.
Left to right-Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Prince Felipe, Dinara Safina, and Caroline Wozniacki
all pictures from reuters.com
Saturday, May 16, 2009
But Indonesia's Sony Dwi Kuncoro equalized the score 1-1 as he beat Park Sung-hwan in rubber sets, 14-21, 21-15, and 22-20.
Korean Hwang Hye-youn surprised Olympic bronze-medalist Maria Kristin with a 23-21, 21-19 win in 47 minutes.
2008 All England champion Lee Yong-dae completed the win, now with Jung Jae-sung in men's doubles, by overcoming Hendra Setiawan and Mohammad Ahsan in straight sets, 21-9 and 21-19.
In the night session, China eased to the final with a comfortable 3-0 triumph over Malaysia, who had waited for 20 years to be in the semi-final.
First, the Chinese mixed doubles pair He Hanbin and Yu Yang subdued Fairuzizuan Tazari/Wong Pei Tty in straight sets, 21-11 and 21-14.
Second, world champion Lin Dan gave further lead 2-0 as he took revenge to Malaysian Lee Chong Wei 21-16 and 21-16. Two years ago, Lee beat Lin Dan in Sudirman Cup qualifying group.
Eventually, Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng ensured a final ticket for the defending champion. They made fatty Koo Kien Keat and lanky Tan Boon Heong surrender after a tough 66-minute battle. 2009 All England champions, Cai and Fu, defeated 2007 All England winners, Koo/Tan 19-21, 21-15, and 23-21.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Lee Yong-dae/Lee Hyo-jung def. Koo Kien Keat/Wong Pei Tty 24-22, 21-23, 21-15
Jang Young-soo def. by Lee Chong Wei 9-21, 13-21
Lee Yong-dae/Jung Jae-sung def. Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong 21-16, 21-16
Hwang Hye-yon def. by Wong Mew Choo 10-21, 21-17, 17-21
Lee Hyo-jung/Lee Kyung-won def. Wong Pei Tty/Chin Eei Hui 21-8, 21-15
Denmark def. Hongkong 4-1
Indonesia def. Japan 4-1
China def. England 5-0
Cai Yun/Fu Haifeng def. Rober Blair/Christopher Adcock 21-15, 21-14
Wang Lin def. Sarah Walker 21-15, 21-11
Lin Dan def. Andrew Smith 21-10, 21-18
Zhang Yawen/Pan Pan def. Gabrielle White/Jennifer Wallwork 21-12, 21-11
He Hanbin/Yu Yang def. Anthony Clark/Donna Kellogg 21-14, 21-14
Friday, May 8, 2009
Andrei Arshavin during training on May 4
Arsenal star Andrei Arshavin may miss the clash between Arsenal vs. Chelsea on Sunday
The Russian midfielder has been laid low with flu and has missed training for the past two days. The 27-year-old still has a couple of days to recover but, at his pre-game press conference on Friday, Arsène Wenger was not optimistic.
“Andrei couldn’t practice and it looks like he will be short for Sunday,” said the manager. “He has flu. We had to send him home again today.”
Andrei Arshavin practices with Cesc Fabregas, Aaron Ramsey, and Robin van Persie
Theo Walcott after scoring to Villarreal in UEFA Champions League 2008/2009 quarter-final
England winger Theo Walcott extends his contract with Arsenal. The 20-year-old today committed his long-term future to the Gunners by agreeing a new contract extension, the details of which have not been revealed by the club.
Walcott joined Arsenal from Southampton in January 2006 and has since gone on to become a regular for both club and country, netting a famous hat-trick for England in the World Cup qualifier against Croatia earlier this season.
Key to Arsenal's success will be retaining the services of men like Walcott, captain Cesc Fabregas and Holland international Robin van Persie, whose talks over a new deal continue.
"The likes of Robin and everyone else, hopefully if they get sorted out, it shows the belief I have got in this team because this team can go very far," said Walcott.
"Every time I have a warm-down I look around the team and see there are some really good players here and I want to be part of it.
"Hopefully we can be right up there with Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool and have a great challenge for it next year."
Walcott called for the squad to put the disappointment of Tuesday night behind them and focus on a strong finish to the end of the league campaign, which will see them face United again at Old Trafford on May 16.
"It is in the past now so we need to forget about that game and look forward to the future," said Walcott, who spent four months on the sidelines after suffering a shoulder injury while on international duty which required surgery during November.
"We have got loads of big games coming up," he said. "Hopefully we can get that third position, we have still got to believe in that.
"But I am definitely ready for next season, next season is going to be a big year for me and the club and I am ready for it."
Walcott thanked the efforts of all the backroom staff at Arsenal.
"The team, the boss and everyone on the staff, everyone has got behind me which is brilliant," he said.
"It is a shame I have had some injuries this year, but hopefully I just want to have unbelievable seasons to come.
"I am going to put my head down, there is still loads of hard work to do.
"I have got to keep on working hard, try and get in that starting line-up every game and score goals which I will be judged on at the end
"The main thing is to win trophies and I think this club can definitely win them."
Walcott added: "It is fantastic to work with the best manager in the world, and the stadium is just an unbelievable place to play at.
"I just want to continue playing my football at this club."
Wenger believes Walcott is integral to the club's future.
"Theo is an intelligent player with amazing ability and speed, and has developed extremely well this season," said the Gunners boss.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Captain Arshavin controls the ball
The young Gunners, skippered by Andrei Arshavin who cannot play in Europe, again showed their potential as a brace from Nicklas Bendtner - his first after a blunder from England keeper David James - and a clinical second-half strike by Mexican Carlos Vela sealed a comfortable 3-0 victory.
Pompey, whose best spell came just after the restart, should have enough points on the board to be safe from the drop, while the Gunners head into their clash with United secure in the knowledge of another top four finish following a 21-match unbeaten league run.
Theo Walcott, Bacary Sagna and Alex Song - who dropped back to the centre of defence - were the only survivors from Tuesday night's 1-0 defeat at Old Trafford.'
Young Polish keeper Lukasz Fabianski - whose had a nightmare display in the FA Cup semi-final against Chelsea at Wembley - was given an early test when Peter Crouch's knockdown was drilled goalwards by Hayden Mullins, but he was down quickly to make a comfortable save.
On 10 minutes, Vela tried his luck from 20 yards, only to send the ball high over the crossbar.
It was no surprise when Arsenal took the lead.
A corner, in the 13th minute, was only half-cleared, and the ball dropped back out to Arshavin on the left.
His deep cross was met at the far post by Bendtner, whose downward header was spilled by James and rolled over the line.
The Gunners' fans at the far end mockingly chanted "England's number one" - with their regular keeper Almunia having seen his cause for international recognition through residency championed by Wenger.
It should have been 2-0 when Emmanuel Eboue raced into the left side of the penalty area and pulled the ball back for Vela.
However, the Mexican delayed the shot, which allowed Hermann Hreidarsson to make a superb recovery block.
Pompey almost snatched an equaliser when Crouch played a one-two with Belhadj on the edge of the area, only to stab his shot just wide of the far post.
Arsenal were awarded a penalty when Arshavin cut through the right side of the area and was tripped by Sean Davis after 41 minutes.
Bendtner scores through penalty
Pompey were less than impressed, claiming Davis had won the ball, with captain Sol Campbell, the former Arsenal defender, booked for dissent.
Although James went the right way, he could not keep out Bendtner's spot kick into the far corner.
Portsmouth came out in determined mood at the start of the second half.
Substitute John Utaka had a great chance to get a goal back, but dragged his shot wide from 12 yards.
Pompey continued to press, with Crouch the next man to fire off target from a decent position before Fabianski pushed away a 20-yard drive from Kanu, sent on for the second half to face his old club.
Somehow the ball stayed out when Utaka got to a chip into the area ahead of Fabianski as the home side saw another chance wasted.
It proved costly as Arsenal made it 3-0 on 56 minutes.
The ball broke for Vela on the left side of the Pompey area after Arshavin's shot was blocked by Hayden Mullins.
Vela celebrates his goal
The Mexican forward showed Pompey how to finish with a low strike into the far corner.
With the job done, Walcott was taken off for the final 25 minutes as Amaury Bischoff made his Premier League debut.
Bendtner, on a hat-trick, blazed over from 25 yards when a better option would have been the pass out to Sagna on the overlap.
James went some way to redeem himself with a fine one-handed save at the near post to deny Vela, before Bendtner was replaced by 19-year-old Fran Merida.
Things got worse for the home side with 12 minutes left when Noe Pamarot was sent off as last man for hauling down Arshavin on the edge of the area. Aaron Ramsey's free-kick struck the wall.
all pictures from arsenal.com