Youngster Lee Ho-ching fell agonisingly short of realising her World Championships dream when she and partner Jiang Tianyi were narrowly beaten in the quarter-finals of the mixed doubles semi-finals in Paris yesterday.
They were leading 3-1 overall against fellow Hong Kong pair of Cheung Yuk and Jiang Huajun, but their opponents fought back fiercely, levelling the score at 3-all before taking the tie 4-3 (9-11, 10-12, 11-6, 4-11, 11-6, 12-10, 11-8).
Cheung and Jiang will now take on Kim Hyok-bong and Kim Jong of North Korea today for a place in the final.
Even if Cheung and Jiang lose, the Hong Kong pair will still retain the bronze medal they won two years ago as there is no need for a third-place play-off.
There was some consolation for 20-year-old Hong Kong-born Lee as she and Jiang reached the quarter-finals of the women's doubles earlier in the day.
They cruised to a 4-2 victory over Polish opponents Nathalia Partyka and Katarzyna Grzybowska, but their medal hopes look slim as they will need to overcome second seed Ding Ling and Liu Shiwen of China in today's last eight to earn themselves a semi-finals berth.
Hot favourites Ding and Liu shattered the hopes of another Hong Kong pair, Ng Wing-nam and Guan Mengyuan, with a straight 4-0 win in the previous round yesterday.