Gold Coast: The last time Lee Chong Wei and Kidambi Srikanth faced off was in the Commonwealth Games mixed team final last Monday, where the World No. 1 Kidambi Srikanth seemed to be gathering steam and force to beat Lee 21-17, 21-14.
Lee and Srikanth will meet each other again in the Commonwealth Games men’s singles final on Sunday. While Lee has a 4–1 career record against Srikanth, he would face a tough task against the World No. 1 player if he is to defend his third Commonwealth Games men’s singles title.
The 35-year-old Lee fought back from a set down in the semi-final to beat H.S. Prannoy 21-16, 9-21, 21-14 at the Carrara Sports and Leisure Centre on Saturday, while Srikanth eased past Rajiv Ouseph of England 21-10, 21-17 in another semi-final. Ouseph later stunned HR Prannoy of India 17-21, 25-23, 21-9 to clinch the bronze medal match.
“This is my last match at the Commonwealth Games, I’ve come thus far, and I will go all out, I have nothing to lose,” said Lee, who won the men’s gold at the 2006 and 2010 Commonwealth Games.
“Srikanth is the World No. 1, but I will give him a good fight,” added Lee.
Besides Lee, Vivian Hoo/Chow Mei Kuan also advanced to the women’s doubles final. They will play Lauren Smith/Sarah Walker of England for the women’s doubles title.
Malaysia’s dominance in the Commonwealth Games men’s doubles category had come to an end on Saturday when defending champions Goh V Shem/Tan Wee Kiong lost to Olympic bronze medalists Marcus Ellis/Chris Langridge of England in the semi-final. The England pair came from behind to beat the number one seeds 15-21, 21-16, 21-15. Malaysia had won seven consecutive men’s doubles title at Commonwealth Games prior to Goh/Tan’s defeat. Goh/Tan then overcame Sachin Dias/Buwaneka Goonethilleka of Sri Lanka 21-8, 21-13 for the bronze medal.
The Rio Olympic mixed doubles silver medalists Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying failed to join Lee Chong Wei and Vivian Hoo/Chow Mei Kuan in finals as then were outlasted by defending champions Chris Adcock-Gabrielle Adcock 19-21, 17-21.
Chan/Goh later exacted a sweet revenge against Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Ashwini Ponnappa whom they lost to in the mixed team final, by seeing off the Indian pair 21-19, 21-19 to win the bronze medal playoff.