It was a poor day for the Chinese in Bangkok as two of their top seeds crashed out at the semi final stage.
Lin Dan and Wang Lin Out
Sony Dwi Kuncoro’s upset over Lin Dan ensured there would be no all-Chinese final in the men’s singles. Yueken Chun will be China’s sole representative in any either of the singles final with his victory over Gao Huan in the other semi final. Wang Lin’s run in the women’s singles was ended by the 2nd seeded Inthanon Ratchanok in two games to book her place in the final against the top seeded Saina Nehwal, with the top seeded Indian dropping just a single set on route to the final.
China With Three Chances At Titles
Liu and Qiu are the only Chinese top seeds left in the draw in the men’s doubles and will take on the 8th seeded Latif and Tazari of Malaysia after both pairs negotiated their semi final opponents in just two games. Cheng and Pan are the sole Chinese pair left in the women’s doubles, after the defeat of the top seeded Huan and Tang to the unseeded pairing of Narissapat and Thongthongkam in two games to set up Sunday’s final.
The sole European hope were the top seeded Fischer Nielsen and Pedersen, but they lost their semi final encounter to Jiaming and Tang to ensure a third Chinese pair into a final this week. Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam are the Chinese pair opponents in the mixed doubles final with the second seeds defeating Singapores Chrisnanta and Neo in two games.
China and Thailand dominate in Bangkok as Lin Dan as reached the last 4 in his build up to the 2012 Games.
China Dominate Men’s Singles
Lin Dan is joined in the semi final by qualifier Gao Huan, who takes on another Chinese player in Yuekun Chen. The Chinese qualifier defeated Takuma Ueda in the opening round whilst his opponent has just dropped a game on route to the last 4. Lin Dan takes on Sony Dwi Kuncoro, who defeated Sourabh Varma in his quarter final in impressive fashion, winning 21-6, 21-8 in just 31 minutes.
The top three seeds are all safely into the last 4 of the women’s singles, joined by Wang Lin who takes on Inthanon Ratchanok. The 2nd seed from Thailand has failed to drop a game on route to the semi final but in their most recent matchup in Australia, the unseeded Chinese player took the match in three games. The other semi final sees the top seeded Saina Nehwal take on the 3rd seeded Porntip Buranaprasertsuk with the Indian top seed winning all of their previous 4 encounters.
Chinese Interest In Doubles Events
Liu and Qiu are the top seeds in the men’s doubles but take on the pairing of Kim and Kim who they have failed to be in both their previous 2 matchups. Hoon and Tan of Malayisa take on Latif and Tazari in an all-Malaysian semi final. Huan and Tang are another top seeded Chinese pair, this time in the women’s doubles and take on the Thai pairing of Narissapat and Thoungthongkam for a place in Sunday’s final. Cheng and Pan have the opportunity to make it an all-Chinese final should they and the top seeds make it through to their semi final with the 5th seeds taking on Aroonkesorn and Voravichitchaikul, seeded 6th this week.
Fischer Nielsen and Pedersen take on Jiaming and Tang in the first of the mixed doubles semi final, with the Danish top seeds being the last Europeans left in the draw. The other semi final sees the 2nd seeded Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam take on the 4th seeded Singapore pairing Chrisnanta and Neo of Singapore.
17-year old Viktor Axelsen has been touted as the future of Danish badminton, from his junior world championship success last summer to his first victory on the European circuit in Cyprus in October 2010. Today, he arrived on the world stage with his 23-21, 21-15 victory over the 7th seeded Bao Chunlai of China.
With just two months before the world championships in London, the men’s singles is seeing a new generation come through to challenge the old guard. Wang Zhengming defeated top seeded Taufik Hidayat in three games to set up a quarter final against Viktor Axelsen whilst in the other quarter final in the top half, Chen Jin will take on Lee Hyun Il after both players defeated their seeded opponent in the second round, meaning no seed is left in the top half of the draw. In fact, just two seeds remain with 2nd seeded Lin Dan defeating Jan O Jorgensen in two games and 4th seeded Peter Gade defeating Rajiv Ouseph of England to book their places in the last 8.
Wang Lin’s retirement during her second round match against top seeded Wang Shixian could be a real scare after coming back from serious injury, the current world champion was 12-8 down in the opening game when she chose to pull out of the match. Wang Shixian will take on Juliane Schenk in the last 8. Saina Nehwal’s run this week ends even more abruptly than last week, with a three game defeat to Cheng Shao Chieh of Chinese Taipei who takes on the 6th seeded Tine Baun in the quarter finals. Wang Yihan is safely into the last 8 with two victories and takes on Yao Jie in the quarter finals after the Dutch woman defeated the 5th seeded Bae Youn Joo of Korea in two tight games.
There was another two seeded casualties in the men’s doubles, with Kido and Setiawan losing out to Endo and Hayakawa of Japan in two games to set up a quarter final against Lee and Jung of Korea, who have been impressive in their opening two matches. The second seed to crash out is the 8th seeded Ahsan and Septano, who lost out to Chinese qualifiers Shen and Hong to set up an all-Chinese quarter final against Cai and Fu. Germany’s pairing of Kindervater and Schoettler have been impressive this week and defeated the Danish pairing of Conrad-Petersen and Rasmussen to reach the last 8 this week and a chance to play the 7th seeded Chinese pairing of Chai and Guo.
All 7 seeds that started the week remain in the women’s doubles draw, with Indonesia’s Marissa and Melati making up the field. The top half of the draw has been fairly straight forward for the four pairs, with all winning in two games today. The bottom half has been much more competitive, with 6th seeded Ha and Kim needing three games to progress to their quarter final match against Jauhari and Polii. The 4th quarter final between Vislova and Sorokina and Fujii and Kakiiwa could be a battle of fitness, with both being involved in a lengthy and closely fought three game match to reach the last 8.
Asia dominates the mixed doubles field, with only Robertson and Wallwork stopping a complete monopoly on proceedings. The super-competitive top half has two fantastic quarter final matches, with top seeded Zhao and Zhang taking on their team-mates He and Yu in an all-Chinese match. Whilst the second quarter final sees the 4th seeded Ahmad and Natsir take on the unseeded pairing of Lee and Ha, playing just their second event together. The Korean pair defeated the 7th seeded Mateusiak and Zieba to reach the last 8. The English pairing of Robertson and Wallwork will be the third British pairing to take on the 2nd seeded Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam after the Thai pair defeated Adcock and Bankier in round 1, then Blair and White in round 2. Robertson and Wallwork will hope it is third time lucky for them.
Denmark’s best chance of a title ended before play even started today, with Boe and Mogensen’s withdrawal and it went from bad to worse in the doubles for the Danes.
Peter Gade was one Danish highlight, with a two game victory against Tommy Sugiarto and he has been joined in the last 16 by another two Danes. Jan O Jorgensen defeated Kenichi Tago in two games to set up a second round match against Lin Dan, who also progressed comfortably into round 2. Viktor Axelsen reversed the result from last week’s Thailand Open and defeated Wong Choong Hann in two tight games to reach the second round, where he takes on the 7th seeded Bao Chunlai. Taufik Hidayat survived an early scare to reach the second round where he takes on Wang Zhengming of China, whilst world champion Chen Jin also survived a scare in the opening round before progressing to take on the 8th seed Park Sung Hwan.
The women’s singles continues to entertain in the early rounds, with Saina Nehwal against coming through against the 2009 world champion Lu Lan in three games to reach round 2. The second round sees an intriguing all-Chinese match between top seeded Wang Shixian and Wang Lin, the current world champion. The other two Chinese seeds progressed safely into the second round from their half of the draw, whilst Tine Baun is the main European threat in the draw and faces Sayaka Sato of Japan in her second round match.
The big shock in the mens doubles is the defeat of 3rd seeded Ko and Yoo to unseeded German pairing Kindervater and Schoettler in three games, further opening up the top half of the draw. There were more surprises as the 5th seeded Lee and Fang lost out to Indonesia’s Chandra and Gunawan, to leave the 7th seeded Chai and Guo as the lone seeds remaining in the top half of the draw. The bottom half was more straightforward for the seeds, with all 4 coming through their match in two games to reach the last 16.
The new Chinese pairing of Ma and Pan lasted just 76 minutes this week, before falling to the top seeded Maeda and Suetsuna. All England semi finalists Ropke and Damkjaer Kruse progressed in the tightest of matches, winning 23-21 in the deciding game to reach the last 16 and a match with the Chinese pairing of Tian and Zhao. There are 4 Japanese pairs into the last 16, with one all-Japanese match set for the second round as 2nd seeded Fujii and Kakiiwa take on the unseeded Misaki and Takahashi for a place in the last 8.
Denmark’s strength in the mixed doubles discipline was dealt a huge blow with all three pairings crashing out in the opening round. 5th seeded and 2009 world champions Laybourn and Rytter Juhl lost out to Sato and Matsuo of Japan in two games, whilst the 3rd seeded Fischer Neilsen and Pedersen lost tamely to Chen and Cheng of Chinese Taipei 21-15, 21-15 and the third pairing of Pieler Colding and Houmann faired the best of the three, but still lost out to Japanese pairing of Ikeda and Shiota. Top seeded Zhao and Zhang survived a three game match to progress into the last 16 and are joined in the top half of the draw by two other Chinese pairs of Xu and Ma as well as He and Yu.
It was a mixed day for the seeds in Bangkok, with several crashing out early on the opening day of play. One seed came through a tough encounter to prove her credentials at the highest level.
Chen Long’s progression to the last 16 was a shift as could be with a pair of victories setting up a third round match with Brice Leverdez of France who battled through a pair of tough matches to make the last 16. Park Sung Hwan also progressed safely in the top half of the draw and takes on Muhammed Hafiz Hashim, who defeated Joachim Persson to reach the third round. The bottom half is laden with Chinese players, with 3 of the 8 coming from China. Chen Jin and Wang Zhengming are joined by Wen Kai, who was the most impressive of the Chinese players in reaching the last 16. The top seed in this side of the draw is local favourite Boonsak Ponsana, who progressed into the last 16 without the loss of a game but faces the 10th seeded Wang Zhengming in his toughest match to date this week.
It might have taken 59 minutes, but Saina Nehwal remains in the draw after defeating Lu Lan in a titanic three game encounter. The opening round seen all 8 seeds progress with varying difficulty, most notably 8th seeded Sung Ji Hyun defeating China’s Wang Lin as she continues her return to top flight action. Jie Yao and Pi Hongyan also progressed into the last 16 to add more quality to the field, with both taking on seeds in their second round matches.
The mixed doubles seen the top two seeds progress safely into the second round, much to the delight of the home crowd. Both Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam as well as Anugritayawon and Voravichitchaikul won their matches without the loss of a game to reach the last 16. 3rd seeded Fuchs and Michels of Germany were also impressive in their 21-5, 21-9 victory, as were the 5th seeds of Xu and Ma in their 21-8, 21-14 defeat of Kwon and Kim of Korea.
Day 1 Results:
With just over a year until the London 2012 Olympics, several of the worlds elite are fighting for a place to represent their country. Qualification for the Olympics is just underway and with three major events in June, players have be able to perform well in order to have a chance of making London 2012.
Chen Long, Chen Jin and Wang Zhengming are all fighting for a place to represent China in the men’s singles and are all seeded this week. Top seeded Chen Long starts against Thailand’s Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk whilst hometown favourite and 2nd seeded Boonsak Ponsana takes on Lu Yi of China. Joachim Persson and Viktor Axelsen are the big names from Denmark and will also being battling against one another to make the Danish team for the Olympics. Their fortunes are mixed though, with Axelsen taking on 16th seeded Wong Choong Hann of Malaysia whilst Persson awaits a qualifier in his opening round.
Top seeded Saina Nehwal’s draw couldn’t have been any harder this week, taking on the 2009 world champion Lu Lan in the opening round before she can think about the seeds on her half of the draw. Wang Lin and Pi Hongyan are in the top half of the draw but are both unseeded only to add to the level of difficulty in progressing from the top half of the draw. Jiang Yanjiao is playing this week knowing that with Wang Lin’s return to competitive play, her spot in London is far from concrete but the bottom half of the draw is considerably weaker than the top, with Yao Jie providing the only non-seeded threat in the bottom half of the draw.
The super-competitive Korean pairs are all in action this week in the men’s doubles, with the top 2 seeds being from Korea. Lee and Jung are the top seeds this week and face a qualifier in the opening round as do the second seeded Ko and Yoo. 6th seeded Cho and Kwon are the third Korean seed this week, whilst a 4th pairing of Kim and Shin are unseeded this week. Denmark also have three pairs playing this week, all of which are unseeded but after Boe and Mogensen’s terrible form at the Sudirman last month, Danish badminton might need some new talent in the men’s doubles.
A surprisingly weak women’s doubles gives Thailand hope of a title this week, with Tian and Zhao being the only big name Chinese pair in the draw this week, seeded 5th. The 6th seeded Ha and Kim will be a partnership to watch as well as the 7th seeded Chinese duo of Cheng and Yixin. The mixed doubles will be the best chance of local success this week, with the top 2 seeds both coming from the host nation. The dangerous pairing of Xu and Ma are also playing this week and are seeded 5th, whilst Lee Yong Dae pairs up with Ha Jung Eun after winning a group match in the Sudirman Cup last month.
There was a double surprise in the quarter finals as Wang Lin and Jiang Yanjiao both crashed out of the women’s singles, whilst the Malaysian superstars progressed safely into the semi finals.
Lee Chong Wei is into the last 4 with a two game victory over Brice Leverdez and takes on the 11th seeded Sho Sasaki in the semi finals tomorrow after the Japanese player defeated Park Sung Hwan in is quarter final matchup. The other semi final is between the 7th seeded Bao Chunlai and Tien Minh Nguyen, seeded 3 who had mixed routes on route to the semi final. Tien Minh Nguyen won by walkover with Sony Dwi Kuncoro’s retiring early into the second game whilst Bao Chunlai defeated Lee Hyun Il in three games to reach the last 4.
Top seeded Saina Nehwal defeated Wang Lin in a tight three game match to reclaim her credentials as one of the best players in the world and her reward for her victory is a match against Sung Ji Hyun who defeated the 3rd seeded Jiang Yanjiao in the second surprise result in the top half of the draw. There is Chinese involvement in the bottom half of the draw in the 2nd seeded Wang Xin after her victory over Ai Goto in the quarter final. Wang Xin’s opponent in the semi final is the 4th seeded Bae Youn Joo who has been in excellent form this week and not dropping a game to date this week.
Bosch and Ridder have been the story of the men’s doubles but faces their toughest challenge against the top seeded Koo and Tan in the semi final. The Dutch pair defeated the 3rd seeded Ahsan and Septano to reach the semis whilst Koo and Tan defeated the 6th seeded Endo and Hayakawa in three games to reach the last 4. The other semi final is an all-seeded encounter between the 4th seeded Chandra and Gunawan who play the 8th seeded Cho and Kwon. The 4th seeds have made a difficult task of reaching the last 4, with a couple of three game matches to reach this stage.
Maeda and Suetsuna have been the class act in the women’s doubles this week and take on the the 4th seeded Jauhari and Polii and there is Japanese interest in the second semi final with 5th seeded Matsuo and Naito against the unseeded Chinese pairing of Ying and Yu who fought through another three game match to reach the last 4.
There was another local success as 6th seed Chan and Goh defeated the top seeded Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam to reach the semi finals this week, where they will take on the 3rd seeded Kurniawan and Bernadeth in their semi final match. The other semi final is between the 4th seeded Ahmad and Natsir who take on the 2nd seed Anugritayawon and Voravichitchaikul of Thailand who have been in excellent form since being taken to three games in their opening round match.
Quarter Final Results:
This weeks GP Gold’s field is almost as strong as the Super Series field of last week with some Chinese stars playing this week as well as the world #1 Lee Chong Wei looking for his second title in his home nation this year.
Lee Chong Wei won the Super Series event in January with an opening round win over Tommy Sugiarto and this week, he defeated the 15th seeded Sugiarto today in two games to reach the last 8 where he will take on France’s Brice Leverdez. China’s chance of clinching the title this week is down to just the 7th seeded Bao Chunlai as 4th seeded Chen Jin lost to Sho Sasaki of Japan in the last 16, with the 11th seeded Sasaki winning in three games to set up a quarter final match with Park Sung Hwan of Korea. The bottom half of the draw is headlined by 3rd seeded Tien Minh Nguyen, who takes on Sony Dwi Kuncoro in the last 8. In the last of tomorrow’s quarter finals, 7th seeded Bao Chunlai takes on the 9th seeded Lee Hyun Il of Korea for a chance to reach the semi finals on Saturday.
Top seeded Saina Newhal will have her toughest test of the week as she takes on Wang Lin in the quarter finals, with the unseeded Chinese player defeating 6th seeded Eriko Hirose in convincing fashion to reach the last 8. There is interest in three of the four quarter finals for China, with 3rd seeded Jiang Yanjiao taking on Sung Ji Hyun in the top half of the draw whilst Wang Xin takes on the on-form Japanese player of the past two weeks, Ai Goto who defeated last week’s India Super Series winner Porntip Buranaprasertsuk today as well as Saina Newhal last week.
Koo and Tan are Malaysia’s second chance of a title this week, having been impressive on route to the last 8. They take on the 6th seeded Japanese pairing of Endo and Hayakawa who have also been playing well this week. Ahsan and Septano are the other seed left in the top half of the draw with the 3rd seeds taking on the Dutch pairing of Bosch and Ridder in their quarter final match. The big shock in the draw was the defeat of 2nd seeded Kido and Setiawan to Malaysia’s Abdul Khalid and Mawan, whose reward is a quarter final match against Cho and Kwon of Korea, seeded 6.
The potential rematch of the top two Japanese seeds is over, as 2nd seeded Fujii and Kakiiwa lost out to Jung and Kim of Korea in their match today, who take on the Chinese pairing of Ying and Yu who defeated Malaysia’s Chin and Wong to reach the last 8. Top seeded Maeda and Suetsuna have had little problems to date and take on the 8th seeded Dutch pairing of Jonathans and Van Dooremalen in their quarter final match.
After Ma and Xu’s stunning first round loss, there has just been no more seeds eliminated from the mixed doubles. With all 6 remaining that started the second round, the only unseeded pairs in the draw are Thailand’s Jongjit and Amitapai who defeated Widianto and Irawati in the second round and Malaysia’s Mohd Tazari and Mg, who take on the 3rd seeded Kurniawan and Bernadeth who reached the India Super Series final last week.
All five of the top seeds reached the last 8 without much concern, but the quarter final was a hurdle that two top seeds stumbled at and opened the draw up for fellow team-mates and other seeded players to take advantage of.
Boonsak Ponsana was the first top seed to crash out today, losing in three games to the 9th seeded Tommy Sugiarto which opened the door for Tien Minh Nguyen to potentially take the title. That prospect lasted a mere hour as the 2nd seeded Nguyen lost to 6th seeded Sho Sasaki in another lengthy three game encounter to further open up the men’s singles draw.
An all-Chinese final is a real possibility in the women’s singles, with top seeded Liu Xin defeating 8th seeded Sayaka Sato to reach the last 4 where she will take on Inthanon Ratchanok of Thailand in the first of the semi finals. The other semi final is another Thailand v China clash, with 6th seeded Porntip Buranaprasertsuk taking on the unseeded Wang Lin with both secure two game victories in their quarter finals to reach the last 4.
The men’s doubles is loaded with Japanese pairs and of the four remaining duos, the highest seed still in the draw is the 5th seeded Endo and Hayakawa who defeated the 3rd seeded Gan and Tan to reach the last 4. Their opponents in the semi final are the top seeded Japanese pair of Hashimoto and Hirata who have failed to drop a game to date. The second semi final sees the 4th seeded Kawamae and Sato, also of Japan take on the 2nd seeded Chandra and Gunawan. Both duos have been on top form this week and have failed to drop a game to date.
The top seeded Fujii and Kakiiwa crashed out in the women’s doubles to the Malaysian pair of Chin and Wong in a tight three game match. They set up a semi final match against another unseeded pair in the Hong Kong duo of Poon and Tse, who defeated the 3rd seeded Singapore pairing of Yao and Sari. The other semi final features another unseeded pair in the Chinese partnership of Xiong and Ou, who take on the only seed left in the draw in Matsuo and Naito of Japan, the 4th seeds who have failed to drop a game to date this week.
The mixed doubles is another event with 4 of the top 5 seeds left in the draw, with top seeded Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam defeating Widianto and Natsir to reach the last 4 against the 5th seeded pair of Hashimoto and Fujii, who defeated the 4th seeded Wong and Chau to reach the semi final. The other semi final is another Thailand – Japan match up with the 3rd seeded Ikeda and Shiota taking on the Thai 2nd seeds of Anugritayawon and Voravichitchaikul, who defeated the unseeded Malaysia pair of Ng and Tan in a three game match late on Friday evening.
Day 4 Results:
An excellent field has been whittled down to just 8 in each of the events, with a few unseeded players making headway in the event as well as the welcome return of China’s Wang Lin after a knee operation sidelined her for over 6 months.
Top seed Boonsak Ponsana progressed through both his matches to reach the last 8 and a match against the 9th seeded Tommy Sugiarto from Indonesia. Sugiarto defeated the 5th seeded Kazushi Yamada in his 3rd round match to progress into the quarters. Unseeded Takuma Ueda is also into the last 8 after his victory over the 3rd seeded Hu Yun to set up his quarter final match against Wong Choong Hann, seeded 8. The pick of tomorrow’s quarter final matches sees the 2nd seeded Tien Minh Nguyen taking on the 6th seeded Sho Sasaki, with the Japanese player in excellent form this week as he has progressed into the last 8 without the loss of a game.
Chinese interest is available in both halves of the women’s singles draw, with top seeded Liu Xin taking on Sayaka Sato of Japan in the top match of the quarter finals. In the bottom half, Wang Lin has returned to action with a stunning 21-19, 21-9 win over the 2nd seeded Yip Pui Yin in her opening round match, before defeating Ayana Kurihana in two games to book her place in the quarter final against Adrianti Firdasari of Indonesia, who defeating Ai Goto in her opening round match earlier in the week.
The seeds are well represented in both doubles events, with a distinct Japanese feel to both events. Hashimoto and Hirata are the top seeds in the men’s doubles and have been nothing short of impressive in reaching the last 8. The pick of the matches in the men’s doubles sees the 3rd seeded Malaysians Gan and Tan take on the 5th seeded Endo and Hayakawa of Japan. The top seeds in the women’s doubles, Fujii and Kakiiwa are through to take on the dangerous Malaysia pair of Chin and Wong in their quarter final match. Matsuo and Naito are the seeded Japanese seeds in the last 8, with the 4th seeded pair taking on Choo and Veeran of Australia in their quarter final match up.
The top 7 seeds are all present in the quarter final of the mixed doubles, with the 8th seeded Lee and Lun of the USA defeated by Tan and Ng of Malaysia, who take on Anugritayawon and Voravichitchaikul in the quarter final. The other Thai pair in the draw is the top seeded Prapakamol and Thoungthongkam who take on the 6th seeded Indonesian pair of Widianto and Natsir in their quarter final match.