Beijing: The Rio Olympics men’s singles gold medalist and Tokyo Olympics silver medalist, Chen Long, has advanced to the semi-finals of China’s 14th National Games individual event and will face off against World No. 10, Shi Yuqi on Thursday.
In the quarter-finals, Chen Long who has just led the Fujian team to the men’s team title on Sunday, defeated Dong Tianyao of Anhui 21-9, 21-10 to enter the last four.
Chen Long told reporters that after going through the quarantine period coming back from Tokyo Olympics, and after winning the men’s team event, he felt that he has slowly found his rhythm.
“I’ve got better and better as the tournament progressed. The only problem is the commuting time between the hotel and the stadium is too long, and I still need to undergo a post-game recovery process, but it’s no big deal,” said Chen.
“This is my last National Games, I’ll enjoy it as much as possible,” added Chen.
Meanwhile, Shi Yuqi, who represented the Jiangsu team, defeated Zhao Junpeng of the Jiangxi team on Tuesday 21-17, 21-10 to set up a blockbuster clash with Chen Long in the semi-finals.
“It’s about time to challenge him, I haven’t played him in an official tournament for a while,” said Shi.
Shi was the runner-up at the 2017 edition, but both he and Chen Long have never won China’s National men’s singles event.
Lin Dan had dominated the event since 2005. Lin who retired on July 4, 2020, won the men’s singles event in 2005, 2009, 2013, and 2017.
Lu Guangzu of Jiangsu and Sun Feixiang Sun of Hubei will take on each other in another men’s singles semi-finals.
In women’s competition, the Tokyo Olympics women’s singles champion, Chen Yufei of Zhejiang will meet Wang Zhiyi of Hubei in the semi-finals while He Bingjiao of Jiangsu will meet Tan Ning of Fujian.