Dubai: Having already qualified for the BWF Dubai Superseries Finals semifinals, some might have thought that World No.1 Chen Long would take it easy against Jan O Jorgensen on Friday.
But Chen Long respected the game too much to take his foot off the accelerator, especially when the crowd is rooting for him, and made it three wins out of three in the men’s group stages with a 21-14, 21-17 victory over Jan O Jorgensen of Denmark. Chen will clash with another Denmark player Viktor Axelsen in the semifinals on Saturday. While another men’s semifinals will be between Jan O Jorgensen and Kento Momota.
Despite losing to Nozomi Okuhara 21-9, 21-15 on Friday, World No. 1 women’s singles player Carolina Marin was really lucky to seal semifinals qualification for the BWF Dubai Superseries Finals. This was due to both Saina Nehwal and Tai Tzu-ying who belonged to the same group as Marin have finished with one win and two losses each.
“I made a lot of mistakes in the match. I tried to adjust and to play better, but it didn’t work out for me,” said Marin after her match.
Saina Nehwal squandered one-game advantage to go down 21-16 18-21 14-21 in a battle that lasted 50 minutes to bow out of the tournament. This eventually made Nehwal to miss the cut after taking into account of games won versus games lost.
For the first time in a very long while, that was no top Chinese mixed doubles pair could make it to the semifinals of any high level badminton tournaments. World No. 1 Zhao Yunlei/Zhang Nan gave a walkover to World No. 2 Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia, and World No. 3 Liu Cheng/Bao Yixin also went down to Korea’s Ko Sung Hyun/Kim Ha Na on Friday. Ko Sung Hyun/Kim Ha Na will play Reginald Lee Chun Hei/Chau Hoi Wah of Hong Kong next, while Chris Adcock/Gabrielle Adcock will fight with Praveen Jordan/Debby Susanto for a place in the mixed doubles final.
In men’s doubles, both World No. 1 Lee Yong Dae/Yoo Yeon Seong and World No. 2 Mohammad Ahsan/Hendra Setiawan advanced to the semi-finals on Friday to set up a rematch of their Group A battle on Saturday. Chai Biao/Hong Wei and Mathias Boe/Carsten Mogensen will fight for a chance of earning a ticket for the final.