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Coombs and Shephard to go head-to-head for Para Badminton World Championship gold

on 25-11-2017 14:21

Krysten Coombs and Jack Shephard will go head-to-head for Para Badminton World Championship honours after Britain's shuttlers guaranteed eight medals.

Coombs and Shephard will face across the net in the SS6 men's singles final in Korea, though top seed Coombs faced a battle to progress to the gold medal match.

Having defeated Frenchman Fabien Morat 21-11 21-11 in his quarter-final, Coombs needed three games to topple Hong Kong's Wong Chun Yim, who had struck first in the opening game.

But Coombs, a two-time medallist at the last edition of the championships in 2015, found his form from then on, eventually prevailing 19-21 21-17 21-16.

It was a considerably easier path to the final for Shephard, winning 21-17 21-15 in his quarter-final clash with Chu Man Kai of Hong Kong before defeating second seed Didin Taresoh of Malaysia 21-15 21-12.

But the men's singles final won't be the only opportunity for Coombs and Shephard to become world champions, with the duo also set to team up in the men's doubles final.

They will play second seeds Wong and Chu as they look to defend the title they won two years ago.

"I can't believe I'm in two World Championship finals," said Coombs.

"All the hard work and changes I have made have worked."

Shephard added: "I'm really happy with my performance.

"I can't wait for the finals tomorrow."

But the finals don't end there, with Rachel Choong set to play in three finals in Ulsan.

In the SS6 women's singles, reigning world champion Choong will face Peru's Carmen Giuliana Poveda Flores for the title having defeated both Yasmin Eissa of Egypt and Poland's Maria Bartusz in straight games en route to the final.

But before that, Choong will pair up with Andrew Martin in the mixed doubles, set to face English opposition across the net in teammate Rebecca Bedford and her French partner Morat.

And in the women's doubles, Choong and Bedford will go for gold together, facing Bartusz and Ireland's Emma Farnham having eased through their semi-final.

"It was an utterly amazing day," said Rich Morris, England head coach.

"We're guaranteed eight world medals and with the outside chance to win all five SS6 events.

"It's an even more impressive stat when England's SS6 players and Lucas Mazur from France are the only European players left to play on finals day."


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