Asia Championships: Olympic Champs Subdue World Champs

Asia Championships: Olympic Champs Subdue World Champs

Lee Yang and Wang Chi-Lin displayed glimpses of their 2021 vintage to overpower Aaron Chia/Soh Wooi Yik at the Badminton Asia Championships yesterday.

The Tokyo 2020 gold medallists, who had gone off the boil since their success in Japan, looked headed to an early exit after dropping the opener 21-14. The second game then saw their famed big-hitting make a comeback, leaving world champions Chia and Soh with no answers. They eventually surrendered 21-16 21-19 after doing battle for 47 minutes at the Al Nasr Club in Dubai.

The second round win was Lee/Wang’s first over the Malaysian world No.2s since January 2021. The Chinese Taipei pair’s next challenge are Liang Wei Keng/Wang Chang, a pair they are yet to face.

In one of the day’s most anticipated matches, All England winner Li Shi Feng came out on top for the third consecutive time against fellow young star Kunlavut Vitidsarn. The world No.11, who leads the HSBC Race to Finals standings, beat the Thai sixth seed 21-13 21-15.

However, Li’s fellow Birmingham conquerors, women’s doubles third seeds Kim So Yeong/Kong Hee Yong, could not prolong their campaign as they suffered a surprise straight games loss to world No.18s Febriana Dwipuji Kusuma/Amalia Cahaya Pratiwi. The Indonesians won 21-16 21-16.

Two big quarterfinal clashes await in women’s singles – between last two champions Wang Zhi Yi and Akane Yamaguchi as well as An Se Young versus Pusarla V. Sindhu.

Pusarla, whose 21-12 21-15 victory extended her unbeaten record against Han Yue to four matches, is yet to overcome her Korean rival after five meetings.

“It won’t be easy against An. I don’t have a good record against her, but will go out all confident,” she said. “I hope to play with a new strategy, try to engage her in rallies and not give away the lead.”

Pusarla is 5-0 down against An.

Seeds out


→  Results (Day 3)

→  Order of play (Day 4)