Lee Hyun-Il beats Angus Ng Ka Long to reach French Open final

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Lee Hyun-Il is a highly disciplined badminton player. (photo: AP)

Paris: The 36-year-old former World No. 1 men’s singles player Lee Hyun-Il of Korea who has not won a Superseries for a while, stormed into the French Open final after stunning No. 8 seed Angus Ng Ka Long of Hong Kong 21-17, 21-15 in 39 minutes at the famous Coubertin Court in Paris.Lee Hyun-Il is a highly disciplined badminton player. (photo: AP)

Lee who has beaten Ng at the 2014 Canada Open final and last year’s Thailand Open, extended his career head to head record against Ng to 3-0 after Saturday’s victory. Lee will face China’s Shi Yuqi who is 16 years younger than him in the final on Sunday. The 20-year-old Shi battled past Taiwan’s Hsu Jen Hao with 21-7, 21-15 in the men’s singles semi-finals.

In men’s doubles, No. 2 seeds Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen of Denmark defeated compatriots Anders Skaarup Rasmussen and Kim Astrup 21-19, 21-17 to set up a final showdown with last week’s Denmark Open runners-up Bodin Isara and Nipitphon Phuangphuapet of Thailand. Isara/Phuangphuapet claimed a hard-fought semi-finals match against Indonesians Angga Pratama/Ricky Karanda Suwardi with 21-18, 17-21, 21-19 in 68 minutes.

No one saw this coming, but unseeded women’s singles player Zhang Beiwen of USA stunned No. 7 seed Sun Yu of China 21-19, 21-15 to reach the women’s singles final. Zhang will play China’s He Bingjiao in the final after He Bingjiao edged past No. 5 seed Sung Ji-Hyun of Korea 27-25, 21-17 in the final four.

In the biggest upset of the day, World No. 1 women’s doubles pair and top seeds Ayaka Takahashi and Misaki Matsutomo of Japan were pushed to the limit by unseeded Chinese pair of Chen Qingchen/Jia Yifan, before losing the nail biter 21-16, 27-29, 15-21 to Chen/Jia in a 99 minutes marathon encounter. Chen/Jia will play No. 6 seeds Chang Ye Na/Lee So Hee of Korea for the women’s doubles crown.

Mixed doubles top seeds Ko Sung Hyun/Kim Ha-Na of Korea were on course for the French Open title and will clash with No. 7 seeds Zheng Siwei/Chen Qingchen of China for the mixed doubles title on Sunday.

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