The TotalEnergies BWF Thomas and Uber Cup Finals 2022 had everything a fan could ask for — great action, come-from-behind wins, unexpected results. Here’s our shortlist of the most memorable matches:
Chen Yu Fei bt An Se Young 17-21 21-15 22-20
Uber Cup Final
An Se Young had a 0-6 record against Chen Yu Fei going into the Uber Cup final in which Korea were rank underdogs against China. The Korean nearly turned the tables on Chen with a crafty, precise display, gaining a hefty lead in the third game before she started cramping. Falling to the floor in between points and barely able to move, the 20-year-old soldiered on and had three match points. The Olympic champion however stayed rock solid and took the match away from her; despite the loss, An’s grit inspired the rest of the Korean team to a famous victory.
Ahsan/Sukamuljo bt Hoki/Kobayashi 22-20 8-21 24-22
Thomas Cup Semifinals
A high-intensity, thrilling contest that saw the Japanese save four match points before the Indonesian scratch pair convert their fifth and go 2-0 up in the semifinals.
Rankireddy/Shetty bt Astrup/Christiansen 21-18 21-23 22-20
Thomas Cup Semifinals
Rankireddy and Shetty against Astrup and Christiansen.
India needed a win in the first doubles to have a chance of staying in the tie, for the second doubles was nearly a foregone conclusion in Denmark’s favour. Everything was going the Indians’ way with two match points in the second game, but Astrup and Christiansen nicked the game and earned a big lead in the decider. The match had more twists in store, with the Indians speeding ahead after the interval, and the Danes pulling level. The second game nearly replayed in the third when Rankiredy and Shetty lost three match points, but the Indians did dare to flick serve on their sixth match point, and were rewarded with a first-ever place in the Thomas Cup final.
Sim Yu Jin bt Wang Zhi Yi 28-26 18-21 21-8
Uber Cup Final
Korea’s Sim Yu Jin.
Has there been a more extraordinary finish to a Uber Cup tie? Sim Yu Jin turned from barely-known No.46 to worldwide sensation with the manner in which she bamboozled recent Asian champion Wang Zhi Yi in the deciding fifth match. Such was her dominance that she led 13-1 at one point; her deception catching Wang short time and again. Has a new star arrived?
Rasmussen/Sogaard bt Choi/Kim 18-21 23-21 21-17
Thomas Cup Quarterfinals
Rasmussen and Sogaard kept Danish hopes alive in the fourth match.
Denmark were on the brink of crashing out of the quarterfinals. With Korea up 2-1 in the tie and Choi and Kim holding two match points against Rasmussen and Sogaard, it looked like all was over for Denmark. But a slice of luck went their way – Choi smashing a kill into the net – and some stubborn resistance later, the Danes had pulled off the memorable rescue act, setting the stage for Rasmus Gemke to complete the come-from-behind victory.
Lu Guang Zu bt Christo Popov 25-23 24-26 21-15
Thomas Cup Group B
Chriisto Popov is on his knees after cramping against Lu Guang Zu.
China ran into dogged resistance in their group tie, with Christo Popov raising French visions of an upset. The Frenchman, despite losing a close first game after holding three game points, showed no sign of being dispirited. He was to lose four more game points in the second before extending the challenge into a decider. At 14-9 it looked like he was headed for a win, but with cramps setting in, Popov could barely move, and Lu ran up a sequence of 10 straight points for the win. At 1 hour 58 minutes, it will be remembered as one of the longest recorded men’s singles matches.
Lauren Lam bt Michelle Li 23-25 21-14 22-20
Uber Cup Group D
Lauren Lam after her close win over Michelle Li.
Fifty places below Michelle Li in the world rankings, Lauren Lam gave USA a headstart in their tie against Canada. The left-hander was unruffled despite losing a close first game; the late stages of the match was dramatic as Li saved six match points, only for Lam to close it out on her seventh opportunity.
Aaron Chia/Teo Ee Yi bt Akira Koga/Yuta Watanabe 22-20 21-17
Thomas Cup Group D
Aaron Chia and Teo Ee Yi celebrate.
A fast-paced, entertaining battle between two scratch pairs featuring acrobatic retrievals, big hits, and the maverick skills of Watanabe. The Japanese were level until 17 in the second, after which the Malaysians pulled away to win the match and the tie.