Ginting defeats Chen Long to reach Singapore Open s-finals
Indonesia's Anthony Ginting sent China's Olympic champion Chen Long packing with an upset 21-8, 21-19 victory at the Singapore Badminton Open quarter-finals on Friday.
In the process, Ginting, 22, has booked a semi-final meeting with Taiwan's Chou Tien-chen, who needed three sets (21-10, 15-21, 21-15) to see off India's Sameer Verma and ensure that his title defence remains on track.
Ginting, the seventh seed, took the first set against Chen in just 14 minutes in front of 4,600 fans at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
Chen, the fourth seed, fought back from 9-14 down to lead 18-16 in the second set, but the 30-year-old was unable to stop Ginting from sealing the match.
Chen, who blamed the draft for his defeat, said: “It is impossible to always be at the peak of your form. Even if you are an Olympic champion, you will lose at times, so I think that is normal.”
While Ginting, the Asian Games bronze medallist, saw off the Olympic champion; the Olympic bronze medallist sent the Asian Games champion packing in another quarter-final on Court 1.
Denmark's Viktor Axelsen, who finished third at Rio 2016, saved two match-points before defeating Asiad gold medallist Jonatan Christie 22-24, 21-18, 24-22.
Axelsen, who lost to Christie at last week's Malaysia Open, was glad to gain a measure of revenge.
“Tired and happy. I felt that it was very fun, but of course winning is the most fun. I felt my opponent played well. Just last week I lost to him, so I’m happy that I won this week. However, I felt that I was lucky, but that’s part of the game,” said Axelsen.
The Dane will meet top seed and world No. 1 Kento Momota, who triumphed 21-18, 19-21, 21-9 over India’s Srikanth Kidambi
In the women’s singles, Japan's Nozomi Okuhara and Akane Yamaguchi both progressed with routine victories over former world No. 1s.
Okuhara crushed India’s Saina Nehwal 21-8, 21-13, while Yamaguchi defeated Thailand’s Ratchanok Intanon 21-13, 21-17 to set up a showdown with Taiwan's top seed Tai Tzu-ying.
Tai recovered from a mid-match wobble to edge South Korea’s Sung Ji-hyun 21-11, 17-21, 21-16 as India's fourth seed PV Sindhu outlasted China’s Cai Yanyan 21-13, 17-21, 21-14 to book her match with Okuhara.