Sun, 03 Aug 2003

Candra/Sigit reach World final

BRITAIN: Men's doubles shuttlers Candra Wijaya and Sigit Budiarto salvaged some pride for their homeland on Saturday by coming back from behind to secure a place in the final of the 2003 Badminton World Championships in Birmingham, England.

Eleventh seeded Candra and Sigit started the first game at a fast pace but were outplayed by seventh seeds Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng of China, who won 15-6.

The Indonesians recouped to take the second game after trailing 2-8, eventually winning 15-10.

In the decider, the Indonesian shuttlers pulled away from the Chinese from 2-2 and led throughout to win 15-9.

The Indonesians, World Champions in 1997, will face the winners of the later semifinal between fourth-seeded Danes Larske Paaske and Jonas Rasmussen against the Chinese pair of Sang Yang and Zheng Bo.

The final matches will be held on Sunday.

-- JP

;JP;HBK; ANPAa..r.. Highlight-Gus Dur-health Gus Dur health improving JP/2/HIGH

Gus Dur on the mend

INDONESIA: The condition of former president Abdurrahman "Gus Dur" Wahid, who has been hospitalized since Friday morning, has improved, an aide said.

"His physician asked him to take a rest and refrain from activities that require a lot of thinking," Gus Dur's spokesman Adhi Massardi was quoted by Antara as saying on Saturday.

Gus Dur, who has suffered at least one stroke in the past, was rushed to Cipto Mangunkusumo General Hospital in Central Jakarta due to unstable blood pressure. Prior to being hospitalized, he had attended a string of late-hour meetings with leaders of the National Awakening Party (PKB) in preparation for the Annual Session of the People's Consultative Assembly, which opened on Friday. -- JP