HYDERABAD: World No.7 Taufik Hidayat came up with a vintage display to outclass Tommy Sugiarto 21-13, 21-11 in the men’s singles semifinals of the Yonex-Sunrise India Open Gold Grand Prix badminton championship here on Saturday.
He will fight it out with former All England champion Muhammed Hafiz Hashim, who downed a fighting Chen Long 21-18, 19-21, 21-15 in the other semifinal.
In today’s match, second-seeded Hidayat gave enough indication that he was moving into top gear.
Hidayat’s down the line smashes were impeccable. A patchy Sugiarto was up against an opponent, who played like someone possessed. The sizeable crowd enjoyed watching Hidayat at his best.
“I have to be in top form tomorrow to win the final,” said Hidayat later. “I cannot afford to go for the high serve in this format. You have to keep the shuttle as low as possible.”
Hongyan in final
In the women’s singles semifinals, World No. 4 and top-seeded Pi Hongyan defeated sixth-seeded Yu Hirayama of Japan 21-7, 21-14 in 29 minutes while fifth-seeded Julia Pei Xian Wong rallied from a game down to stop Zhang Bei Wen of Singapore 19-21, 21-13, 21-15 in 43 minutes.
Vailyaveetil Diju and Gutta Jwala moved a step closer to creating history by becoming the first-ever mixed doubles pair to make it to the final of a Gold Grand Prix championship when they beat unseeded Ong Jien Guo and Chong Sook Chin of Malaysia 21-11, 21-12.
Diju and Jwala will take on the third-seeded Limpele Flandy and Vita Marissa of Indonesia in the final on Sunday.
“We are delighted with our performance,” said a beaming Diju and Jwala. “We played our best match today and we hope to continue our form for one more match to list our maiden Gold Grand Prix title. Everything went right for us and we are enjoying our game.”
Earlier, Jwala and Sruthi Kurien lost the women’s semifinal against Vita Marissa and Nadya Melati 17-21, 9-21.
The results (semifinals):
Men: Singles: Taufik Hidayat (Ina) bt Tommy Sugiarto (Ina) 21-13, 21-11; Muhammad Hafiz Hashim (Mas) bt Chen Long (Chn) 21-18, 19-21, 21-15.
Doubles: Choong Tan Fook & Lee Wan Wah (Mas) bt Joko Riyadi & Candra Wijaya (Ina) 21-6, 22-20; Hendri Kurniawan Saputra & Vijaya Hendra (Sin) bt Alvent Yulianto & Hendra Aprida Gunawan (Ina) 21-13, 21-15.
Women: Singles: Julia Pei Xian Wong (Mas) bt Zhang Bei Wen (Sin) 19-21, 21-13, 21-15; Pi Hongyan (Fra) bt Yu Hirayama (Jpn) 21-7, 21-14.
Doubles: Vita Marissa & Nadya Melati (Ina) bt Gutta Jwala & Shruti Kurien (Ind) 21-17, 21-9; Ma Jin & Wang Xiaoli (Chn) bt Jo Novita & Endang Nursugianti (Ina) 21-9, 21-6.
Mixed doubles: V. Diju & Gutta Jwala (Ind) bt Ong Jien Guo & Chong Sook Chin (Mas) 21-11, 21-12.
Limpelle Flandy & Vita Marissa (Ina) bt Ahmad Tantowi & Puspita Richi Dili (Ina) 21-10, 21-19.