KUALA LUMPUR: One is out to regain the faith of his fans while the other is hoping not to let his home fans down again.
So, expect a fiery duel when Malaysia’s world number one Lee Chong Wei takes on world champion Lin Dan of China in the men’s singles semi-final in the China Masters at Changzhou today.
Malaysia’s Choong Tan Fook-Lee Wan Wah also kept Malaysia’s hopes alive in the men’s doubles when they marched into the semi-finals. The duo who beat Li Tian-Shen Ye of China 21-13, 22-20 yesterday, will take on Guo Zhengdong-Xu Chen next.
Yesterday, Chong Wei survived a fierce first game assault from China youngster Du Pengyu before prevailing 21-19, 21-15.
Home favourite Lin Dan, who failed to make it to the final last year, also did not have it easy and had to come back from the brink of defeat to beat South Korean Park Sung-hwan 21-15, 13-21, 23-21.
This year, Lin Dan has beaten Chong Wei at the All-England final (March) and the Sudirman Cup (May) while Chong Wei pulled the rug from under the China ace at the Swiss Open final (March).
The other semi-final will be between Boonsak Ponsana of Thailand and World Championships runner-up Chen Jin.
Boonsak was earlier involved in a controversial quarter-final match against Peter Gade Christensen, with the Dane venting his anger at the umpire for giving him a warning.
The Dane claimed that the umpire made three bad line calls in the rubber game, which resulted in the Thai winning 21-16, 19-21, 21-18 in 69 minutes.
“Two were very bad calls ... I said no and she gave me a warning. Of course, I was affected by the bad calls as she gave him (Ponsana) the points.”
Former internationals Gan Teik Chai-Tan Bin Shen failed to make it a double joy when they lost 18-21, 15-21 to South Koreans Cho Gun-woo-Yoo Yeon-seong.