Lee Chong Wei proved his credentials as the world number 1 with a three-game victory over his archrival Lin Dan. The 80-minute match was the longest match of the day by some distance, with Lee Chong Wei taking the match 22-20, 16-21, 21-17 to put him in excellent form ahead of next months Commonwealth Games, where he is likely to be the undoubted favourite.
The women’s singles also sprung a surprise as unseeded Jiang Yanjiao defeated the new world number 1 Wang Xin in two tight games, winning 23-21, 21-18. News also emerged that new world Champion Wang Lin will be sidelined after knee surgery in Germany this week, which could propel Jiang Yanjiao higher up in the rankings over the coming weeks.
Cai and Fu repeated their World Championship success over Koo and Tan, again in three games with an 18-21, 21-14, 21-12 win in 46 minutes. The lower seeded Chinese pair have won their last three tournaments together, as well as defeating Koo and Tan for the fifth consecutive time, dating back to the 2009 Sudirman Cup.
The new partnership of Wang and Yu has been a successful one for the Chinese pair, winning last week China and again this week in Japan. They defeated another Chinese pair, Cheng and Zhao in very impressive fashion in just 31 minutes, winning 21-17, 21-6 to take their second title in as many weeks.
Zhao however did win one title on the day, taking the mixed doubles title with partner Zhang Nan in another all-Chinese final. They defeated the 8th seeded Tian and Tao in two tight games, winning 21-19, 22-20 in 49 minutes. It was the unseeded pairs second Super Series title of 2010, winning the All England Championships earlier in the year.
It has been four months since Lin Dan took on Lee Chong Wei in the Thomas Cup and a year since their last Super Series meeting, but tomorrow arguably the best two players in the world go head to head in Japan.
Lee Chong Wei defeated the unseeded Boonsak Ponsana 21-13, 21-18 to book his place in tomorrow’s final, having not dropped a game in his four matches and conceding just 85 points on route to the final. Lin Dan defeated Peter Gade in two games, winning 21-11, 21-19 to book his place in tomorrow’s final having also not conceded a game on route to the final, conceding 122 points on route.
The women’s singles final unsurprisingly is an all-Chinese encounter. Jiang Yanjiao defeated the resurgent Lu Lan in the quarter finals and then defeated the 3rd seeded Wang Shixian in two tight games to book her place in tomorrow’s final. The other finalist is the second seeded Wang Xin, who defeated Tine Baun in her semi final encounter as she looks to win her second Super Series title in 2 weeks.
Tomorrow’s men’s doubles final is a rematch of the world championship final in Paris last month, as Koo and Tan take on Cai and Fu in this week’s final. Both pairs came through their semi final matches in two games and they have only conceded one game apiece in reach the finals stage, both in their quarter final matchups. This is their 10th meeting, with Cai and Fu winning the previous 4.
The women’s doubles final is another all-Chinese affair, with the 5th seeded Wang and Yu taking on the 3rd seeded Cheng and Zhao. The 5th seeds have been truly impressive this week as they have failed to drop a game and have conceded just 69 points on the way to tomorrow’s final. The 3rd seeds received a first round bye and have only conceded a single game, in their three game victory over the top seeed Cheng and Chien in today’s semi final.
The mixed doubles is the third and final all-Chinese affair, with unseeded Zhang and Zhao taking on the 8th seeded Tao and Tian. Zhang Nan will hope to put his men’s doubles defeat behind him but his partner Zhao Yunlei is also playing in the women’s doubles final also. The 8th seeded pair have focussed purely on the mixed doubles and after surviving being match point down in the opening round, have gone from strength to strength in reaching tomorrow’s final without dropping another game this week.
Since her 2009 win in the world championships, Lu Lan has almost fallen off the Badminton world, after her absence from the world championships this year and from her non-appearance at this years world championship to defend her title she has dropped to China’s number 6 player.
That all changed today as she defeated the top seed Wang Yihan in stunning fashion with a 21-15, 21-9 victory to set up a quarter final matchup with another unseeded Chinese player, Jiang Yanjiao. In an equally impressive performance, Jiang Yanjiao took out the 6th seeded Pi Hongyan in two games, winning 21-6, 21-11 to set up the all-Chinese quarter final.
There also wins for Wang Xin, Wang Shixian and Tine Baun to progress into the last 8. There is also two Japanese players in the last 8, Eriko Hirose takes on the 2nd seeded Wang Xin whilst qualifier Shizuka Uchida takes on the 3rd seed Wang Shixian.
Anticipation was rife that Kenichi Tago could beat the top seed in Japan this week, but Lee Chong Wei took his record over the Japanese player to 6-0 with an impressive 21-10, 21-10 win to book his place in the last 8. Bao Chunlai is the top seeds next opponent after defeating Kazushi Yamada in two games. There was a two game victory for Lin Dan over Hu Yun to set up a third meeting with Park Sung Hwan in the last 4 weeks. Peter Gade is also through to the quarter finals after a three game victory over Japanese qualifier Takuma Ueda, he plays Tien Minh Nguyen who stopped an all-Danish quarter final with his two game victory over Jan O Jorgensen.
The two seeds remaining the men’s doubles progressed safely into the last 8, with Koo and Tan defeating Chen and Lin in two games and Cai and Fu disposing of Pratama and Saputro. Both seeds take on a Korean pair in the last 8, with Koo and Tan taking on Kim and Shin whilst Cai and Fu take on Cho and Kwon for a place in the last 4.
The women’s doubles lost three local pairs today, most notably the 4th seeded Fujii and Kakiiwa who were defeated in two games by Jang and Kim of Korea. The last remaining Japanese pair, Maeda and Suetsuna takes on the Macau pair of Zhang and Zhang for a place in the last 4. There were also wins for Cheng and Chien, the top seeds take on Kim and Lee of Korea in the last 4.
It has been a disappointing month for Widianto and Natsir, top seeds for the previous three events and failing to reach the final in any of them. Their most recent failure came today with a tame defeat to unseeded Chinese pair Zhang and Zhao. The new partnership of He and Ma came through a three game scare against Lee and Chien to book their place in the last 8, where they play Zhang and Zhao.
There were no shocks in the bottom half of the draw, with all four seeds progressing. Only Fischer Nielsen and Pedersen dropped a game against their Korean opponents Shin and Ha but they progressed to set up an all-Danish quarter final tomorrow.
Japan was well represented at their home Super Series, but only the mainstays on the tour have survived into Round 2. 7th seeded Eriko Hirose is the big hope in the women’s singles and is through to Round 2 with a two game win over Cheng Shao Chieh on the opening day.
Kenichi Tago faught back from a game down to ensure his place in the second round, his reward is a match with top seeded Lee Chong Wei who was impressive in his 21-5, 21-9 opening round victory. On the other side of this half of the draw, Lin Dan secured his place in the last 16 with a two game win and will play Hu Yun of Hong Kong is his second round match.
Sho Sasaki was the story of the day for the local crowd; defeating 4th seeded Taufik Hidayat in three tight games to secure his place in the last 16 against Park Sung Hwan. There were wins for Jan O Jorgensen and Tien Minh Nguyen also, but the unlikely story in the draw is Takuma Ueda. The Japanese qualifier defeated Eric Pang to set up a dream last 16 match up with 2nd seeded Peter Gade, who defated Wong Wing Ki in two games today.
Round 2 in the women’s draw is full of intrigue, as the draw has top seeded Wang Yihan likely to play three of her Chinese team-mates on route to the final. Tomorrow sees her play the 2009 World Champion Lu Lan, with the winner to play the winner of Pi Hongyan and Jiang Yanjiao. Wang Shixian is the likely opponent in the last 4 for any of those four ladies.
The bottom half is more simple, with Tine Baun, Wang Xin and Eriko Hirose all winning comfortably. The only casualty is 8th seeded Yao Jie who was defeated in two games by Sung Ji Hyun of Korea, who will now play Japan’s Sayaka Sato in the round of 16.
The men’s doubles has been decimated with a trio of big name upsets in the opening round. 6th seeded Fang and Lee crashed out in a three game loss to Kim and Shin of Korea before Lee and Jung, seeded 7 lost tamely into two games to their Thai opponents, Anugritayawon and Prapakamol. Then the third shock of the day came with 3rd seeded Boe and Mogensen crashing out in three games also to the unseeded Malaysian pair of Chan and Lim. The top half of the draw has just one seed remaining, the top seeded Koo and Tan who progressed safely in two games.
The 2nd seeds Kido and Setiawan pulled out pre-event, as well as 4th seeded Guo and Xu. Leaving just the 5th seeded Cai and Fu and the 8th seeded Chandra and Gunawan in the bottom half of the draw. Both pairs progressed safely to the second round with two game victories.
The expectancy of all the of the 7 seeds that started the week making the second round was not a bold expectation, only the 6th seeded Pan and Tian pulled out pre-event to stop the clean sweep of seeds into the second round. The two Japanese hopes in the draw have a potential clash in the semi final as 2nd seeded Maeda and Suetsuna and 4th seeded Fujii and Kakiiwa both progressed into round 2. 5th seeded Wang and Yu are also a pair to watch, they are into the last 16 with a 21-11, 21-7 victory in round 1.
The mixed doubles almost has a full compliment of seeds remaining, with only the 4th seeds Thai pairing of Anugritayawon and Voravichitchaikul crashed out in the two games to the unseeded Korean pair of Yoo and Kim. There was little problems for the 2nd and 3rd seeded pairs, who came through their opening round matches against their Japanese opponents. 8th seeded Tao and Tian had to save a match point in their opening round match against Susanto and Rijal, coming through 25-23 in the third game.