Dongguan: In a neck and neck battle at the Sudirman Cup on Saturday, after Kenta Kazuno/Ayane Kurihara unexpectedly won an one-sided mixed doubles match against world No. 8 Kim Ha Na/Ko Sung Hyun 21-14, 21-15 in 37 minutes, Japan eliminated 3-time Sudirman Cup champion South Korea 3-2 in the semi-finals, clinching a final berth to clash against China on Sunday.
In a tight opening men’s doubles match which lasted 55 minutes, world No. 1 men’s pair Lee Yong-Dae/Yoo Yeon-Seong notched up the first point for Korea when they defeated Hirokatsu Hashimoto/Noriyasu Hirata 21-18, 21-16.
World No. 10 Nozomi Okuhara put up a spirited fight in the women’s singles match against world No. 7 South Korean Sung Ji Hyun. Okuhara withstood a courageous fightback from Sung to win the match 11-21, 21-17, 21-14.
A controversial call by the umpire at the end of second set, helped Son Wan Ho survived Takuma Ueda’s fight back. Son manage to shrug off the Japanese shuttler 21-9, 22-20 in the men’s singles match in 51 minutes.
Misaki Matsutomo/Ayaka Takahashi staged a terrific comeback for Japan to succeed in the semi-finals of Sudirman Cup when they stepped up their games, wining an intense battle against Chang Ye Na/Jung Kyung Eun of Korea 21-17, 21-8 and helped pave the way for a brilliant victory by Kenta Kazuno/Ayane Kurihara to down Kim Ha Na/Ko Sung Hyun in straight sets in the deciding mixed doubles match.
Japan will take on China in the Sudirman Cup final on Sunday.