The Semi Finals storylines were of two unseeded Chinese players, Bao Chunlai and Wang Xin and their impressive runs to the last four stage of the competition. Bao Chunlai was against 8th seeded Tien Minh Nguyen in the first of today’s semi finals.
The Vietnamese player had breezed into the Semi Final stage without the loss of a game en route and had been on court well under two hours to reach this stage. Bao Chunlai had defeated Peter Gade in the previous round to set up this encounter, spending over 2 and half hours on court to reach the semi final stage.
The first game did little to convince anyone that Bao Chunlai was feeling tired, never letting Nguyen take a led in the opening game that was won 21-15 by the unseeded Chinese player. The second game was a much tighter affair, the pair swapping the lead on various occasions. With the game poised at 12-12, Bao Chunlai 3 points and then four points without reply to take a 20-15 lead. With the second time of asking, Bao Chunlai took the game 21-16 and booked his place in the final.
Wang Xin was next on court, playing Wang Lin seeded 2. The pair had played just last week in China with Wang Lin winning in three games. This was Wang Xin’s 6th match of the week, having come through two rounds of qualifying to just make the main draw. Wang Xin stormed to a 4-0 led in the first game before Wang Lin rallied over the coming points to make the score 13-13.
Wang Xin then won the next six points, taking the first game at the second time of asking 21-15. Both players knew they needed a good start in the second game, Wang Xin stormed to a 5-1 lead, only for the second seed to reel off five points in a row to make it 7-7. However, Wang Xin never led her opponent into the lead in the second game, winning two points as soon as Wang Lin drew level once more. At 18-17, Wang Xin finished her opponent off with three points in a row to take the second game 21-17.
Both the other semi finals in the singles went to three sets. With Taufik Hidiyat beating fellow Indonesian Simon Santoso 13-21, 21-12, 21-18 in 62 minutes. Wang Yihan beat Japan’s Eriko Hirose 18-21, 21-12, 21-9 in 64 minutes.
Finals day with have some local interest, with Miyuki Maeda and Satoko Suetsuna beating second seeded Ma and Kim over Korea to reach the ladies doubles final in the longest match of the day at 75 minutes.
Howard Bach and Tony Gunawan’s run ended today, beaten in three games by Dasuki and Sukmawan of Indonesia. They set up an all-Indonesian final with Kido and Setiawan in the men’s doubles. There is also some European interest in tomorrow’s finals. Fischer Nielsen and Pedersen are through to the final against unseeded Thai pairing Anugritaywon and Voravichitchaikul in tomorrow’s mixed doubles final.
Play resumes tomorrow at 12 noon.