Taipei: Seventh seed Lin Dan survived a scare from Japan’s Riichi Takeshita before winning his Chinese Taipei Open semi-final match in three tight sets at Taipei on Saturday.
The Chinese, who are looking to move higher in BWF ranking through winning the Chinese Taipei Open title was stretched to the limit before prevailing 21-15, 14-21, and 21-18 in 65 minutes.
After trailing 11-3 in the first set, the Japanese put on a resilient performance to crawl his way back into the game at 11-8. Nevertheless, Lin Dan proved too strong for Riichi Takeshita as he eased to the first set victory 21-15 quickly.
Riichi Takeshita broke into second with heavy attacks to open up a 7-0 lead over Lin Dan quickly. He continued to hold his nerve, gave Lin Dan no opportunity to get back level and snatched the game with 21-14.
In the decider, Takeshita exhibited the guile and fight of samurai spirit, refusing to wilt under the weight of Lin Dan’s sublime smashing display. The unseeded tied the score at four different times during the game before Olympic champion roared back to fend off the Japanese at 21-18.
Lin Dan will play compatriot Wang Zhengming who knocked out Wei Nan of Hong Kong in another semi-final 21-18, 21-16.
Here are the final matchups on Sunday:
XD Alfian Eko Prasetya-annisa Saufika (Indonesia) VS Liu Yuchen- Yu Xiaohan (China)
WS Sung Ji Hyun (Korea) VS Liu Xin (China)
WD Wang Xiaoli Wang-Yu Yang (China) VS Nitya Krishinda Maheswari-Greysia Polii (Indonesia)
MS Lin Dan (China) VS Wang Zhengming (China)
MD Li Junhui-Liu Yuchen Liu (China) vs Andrei Adistia-Hendra Aprida Gunawan (Indonesia)