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Robertson & Emms lead England bid

Selasa, 16 Agustus 2005 08:22:10
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Olympic stars Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms represent England's best chance of medal success at the World Badminton Championships which start on Monday.

The duo, who won silver in the mixed doubles in Athens, are the top seeds to win the event in Anaheim, California.

Emms and Robertson are the number one mixed doubles seeds
They are on course for a revenge clash with double Olympic champions Zhang Jun and Gao Ling of China.

England have seeded players in four of the five championships events as they seek to build for the next Olympics.

Robertson is determined to win gold after taking a bronze medal in the men's doubles with Simon Archer in the 1999 World Championships.

The 28-year-old and his mixed partner Emms won the prestigious All England mixed title in March and are ranked number one in the world.

He told BBC Sport: As the top seeds we can only aim for a gold medal but there's a level playing field at the top of the mixed and five or six pairs are in with a shout.

We have been unfortunate in past World Championships, the last one I was coming back from an elbow operation, but this is the first where we have both been fit and feeling strong.

We've had the results in the last few months to show that we've got what it takes to come away with a good medal.

National coach Ian Wright believes it is important for the team to build on the success of Athens, when Robertson and Emms' heroics brought the sport to a new public.

There is a big year ahead with the World Championships, the World Team Championships, the Commonwealth Games and the European Championships.

We need to get on a roll to get the publicity to keep the sport in the public eye, he said.

And he backed Robertson and Emms to cope with the pressure of being favourites.

It's been a head-turning year for them, a lot of new things have come their way and they have got a certain notoriety.

It's been good for the sport but it's been quite difficult for them to get the balance, but the training has been going well and they're looking in good form.

England squad:
Men's singles: Aamir Ghaffar, Andrew Smith Women's singles: Tracey Hallam.

Men's doubles: Simon Archer & Anthony Clark, Kristian Roebuck & David Lindley, Ian Palethorpe & Paul Trueman.

Women's doubles: Donna Kellogg & Gail Emms, Ella Tripp & Jo Wright, Tracey Hallam & Natalie Munt, Liza Parker & Suzanne Rayappan.

Mixed doubles: Nathan Robertson & Gail Emms, Robert Blair & Natalie Munt, Anthony Clark & Donna Kellogg, Kristian Roebuck & Liza Parker.

(source: BBC)

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