PETALING JAYA – Malaysia has clinched another silver medal at the Rio Olympics after men’s doubles pair Goh V Shem and Tan Wee Kiong were narrowly defeated by China’s Fu Haifeng and Zhang Nan during their gold-medal match at the Riocentro Pavilion 4.
The Chinese pair claimed the gold at the end of a three set match 21-16, 11-21, 21-23.
Despite an impressive display of badminton from Fu and Zhang in the early stages of the rubber set, Goh and Tan fought hard to narrow the gap between the two pairs.
The Malaysians came back during the start of the second half of the set with a relentless barrage of attacks against the Chinese pair to tie the game at 12-12.
Fu and Zhang, however, once again broke away with the lead but the Malaysians came back with full force to take the lead for the first time in the set at 18-17 just before the end of the match.
Earlier, the Chinese pair were quick to establish a strong lead at the beginning of the first set but the Malaysians fought back to take the lead at the break 11-8.
Goh and Tan continued to maintain a strong lead after the break to eventually win the set 21-16.
In the second set, the Chinese duo had an optimistic start with a 11-4 lead at the break after a powerful display of strength and agility against the Malaysians.
Fu and Zhang hardly gave much room to the Malaysians to make an impression after the interval and they continued to build upon their lead to eventually win the set.
The pair, currently ranked 12th in the world, reached the final after defeating Chinese duo Chai Biao-Hong Wei in the semi-final on Tuesday after a tense three-set match.
Fourth seed Fu-Zhang on the other hand reached the final after overpowering Britain’s Marcus Ellis and Chris Langridge 21-14, 21-18.
This is the second gold-medal match in badminton that Malaysia has played at the Rio Olympics after mixed-doubles pair Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying took home silver medals on Wednesday.
On Friday, national shuttler Datuk Lee Chong Wei also qualified for the final of the men’s singles competition after defeating China’s Lin Dan.
Two-time silver medal winner Lee will face China’s Chen Long for a chance at the gold medal on Saturday. – The Star Online