Lee Chong Wei Won! I know that a lot of Malaysian readers come here, so I’m sure that you’re all very proud of Lee Chong Wei. Lee won the finals 21-16, 21-16, and I’m not that surprised. Lee is the number one player in the world, but he still needs to beat Lin Dan in one of the big events like Worlds, Olympics, or All Englands.
The next big tournament, is the Yonex Sunrise India Open 2009, and the top two seeds are Lee Chong Wei and Taufik Hidayat.
Despite a noble effort on the part of one young Dane, the Swiss Open finals will feature none other than Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan, again. No big surprise here. These guys are the Nadal/Federer of badminton no doubt about it. Jan O Jorgensen had a fantastic tournament here, he played the role that I was expecting Andrew Smith to play by making a breakthrough. This will no doubt solidify him as the next Dane to look out for, and will do wonders for his confidence as well. He wasn’t enough for Lee Chong Wei however, Lee won the match 21-12, 20-22, 21-9.
On the other side of the draw Lin Dan knocked out his teammate Chen Jin 21-13, 21-14. Never know what the deal was there as anytime you have a China vs China match you can assume it will end up like a Williams sister duel, with a preordained result. Anyway, my money is on Lin Dan for this one. Of course that is the smart money, however with less pressure Lee Chong Wei could do quite well. It think that really is the difference between these two, Lin Dan handles the big matches better, even if perhaps Lee Chong Wei could be a little better otherwise.
After the first rounds of the Wilson Swiss Open Super Series Malaysia’s Lee Chong Wei looks to be the strongest challenger to the title. Lee won his first round match fairly easily by defeating Japan’s Kenichi Tago 21-18, 21-12. Lin Dan on the other hand really struggled against his opponent Arvind Bhat. Going three games Lin Dan managed to just pull off the victory. Canadian player Stephan W. has a post on it over at his website if you want more details.
No real surprises so far, but I’m sure the next round will be a little more interesting. Simon Santoso lost to Wong Choong Han, and while that isn’t that big a surprise, it shows that Wong still has it, even if he is on the way out. The match I’m interested in tomorrow is between Wong Choong Han and Andrew Smith. I predicted a semi-final for Smith, so this is a big one for me : )
Unfortunately Peter Gade broke his toe or something so he had to pull out. Once again, Stephan W told me about this. Come back tomorrow for more updates.
It’s very difficult to not be persuaded by the strong performances of Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei last week while making predictions for this week’s Swiss Open. Of course they are the favourites to make the finals, but we need to account for fatigue, these players played much more badminton than the rest of the players.
I will however make one startling prediction for this event, even if only for the entertainment value. I predict that England’s Andrew Smith will make it to the semi-finals of this event by defeating Sony Dwi Kuncoro (possibly by default as Sony withdrew last week), Simon Santoso and most importantly beating either Chen Jin or Bao Chunlai in the quarter-finals. This is an absolutely audacious prediction that requires 3 upsets, but I think he is up for the challenge.
Otherwise, my prediction is a repeat of last week’s All England finals with Lin Dan defeating Lee Chong Wei in the finals of the Swiss Open.