Reigning World and Olympic champion Lin Dan of China defeated compatriot Wang Zhengming in the men’s singles final of the Asian badminton championships at New Delhi’s Siri Fort Badminton Stadium yesterday.
Second-seeded Lin beat Wang, the unseeded 2008 junior world champion, by a score of 21-17, 21-15.
Li Xuerui overcame stiff resistance from Liu Xin to triumph 21-13, 18-21, 21-19 in the all-Chinese women’s singles final featuring two players who came through the qualifying competition.
“I was determined to win this title as I have not been in good form in recent tournaments,” Lin said after clinching his maiden Asian championship title.
Lin, the 2008 Olympic gold medalist, completed a hat-trick of World championship titles in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad last year.
“It’s nice to come here and win the Asian championship title,” Lin said. “It’s not easy to play against players from China and Wang’s a very good player. He’s young and has the ability to be a future star.”
Men’s singles top seed Taufik Hidayat of Indonesia, a former Olympic and world champion, was knocked out in the third round.
Lin led the Chinese domination of the Asian championships despite the absence of several of the country’s top players who are training for the Thomas Cup and Uber Cup team championships scheduled for Malaysia next month.
Among the Chinese stars who skipped the Asian championships, was men’s singles title holder Bao Chunlai and the women’s singles players who occupy the top five places in the world rankings.
Women’s singles winner Li said she was confident of winning the title after defeating top-seeded Saina Nehwal of India in the semifinal on Saturday.
“I was confident of going all the way after the victory against Nehwal, and my belief in my ability worked in my favor,” said Li, who acknowledged that playing three games in the final left her extremely tired toward the end.
Liu said she tried to slow down the pace of the game, but the plan did not work.
“Li’s a very fast player, but unforced errors cost me the final,” she said.
China extended its domination with the sixth-seeded pair of Pan Pan and Tian Qing winning the women’s doubles title by posting a 21-10, 21-6 victory over the Malaysian duo of Vivian Kah Mun Hoo and Woon Khe Wei.
Fifth-seeded Cho Gun-woo and Yoo Yeon-seong of South Korea pulled off a shock 21-19, 12-21, 21-17 victory over the top-seeded pair of Chen Hung-Ling and Lim Yu-Lang from Taiwan in the men’s doubles final.
Malaysia’s seventh-seeded pair of Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying won the mixed doubles title with a 21-17, 20-22, 21-19 triumph against the sixth-seeded South Korean duo of Yoo Yeon-seong and Kim Min-jung.
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