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China ease past Denmark in Sudirman Cup quarters

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, May 24, 2019
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Chen Long of China competes during the men's singles match against Viktor Axelsen of Denmark at quaterfinal stage of Sudirman Cup 2019 in Nanning, south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region on May 23, 2019. (Xinhua/Liu Xu)

Host China eased past Denmark 3-1 to match up Thailand, who knocked out defending champion South Korea, in the semifinals of 2019 Sudirman Cup on Thursday.

China, the 10-time champion, is the only team never miss the semifinals of Sudirman Cup in the history.

Top-ranked Zheng Siwei and Huang Yaqiong rallied from one game down to beat Mathias Christiansen and Sara Thygesen, 19-21, 21-11, 21-13, took the opening point for China in mixed doubles.

Viktor Axelsen, the 2017 world champion, defeated world No.5 Chen Long 21-11, 21-18 in men's singles to tie it 1-1. It was the first time for China, who swept Malaysia and India 5-0 in the group stage, to drop a match in the tournament.

"I know if I want to beat him I must play carefully in all aspects. I made a lot of mistakes in Game 2 but I have better physical energy," said Axelsen.

China regained the lead as Li Junhui and Liu Yuchen downed Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen 21-18, 21-16 in men's doubles before Chen Yufei cruised over Mia Blichfeldt 21-16, 21-17 in women's singles to seal the victory.

"I had a better performance than the previous days, and hope to tune up for the coming matches," said Chen.

Without injuried 6th-ranked Son Wan-ho and 10th-ranked Sung Ji-hyun, South Korea felt helpless in this do-or-die battle against Thailand.

Thailand bulit a 2-0 lead after winning the mixed doubles and men's singles before Kang Min-hyuk and Kim Won-hoIn pulled one back by overturning Tinn Isriyanet and Kittinupong Kedren 19-21, 21-17 and 21-14.

The reigning champion put all its hope in the 17-year-old An Se-Young, who stunned world No.1 Tai Tzu-ying to inspire South Korea edge Chinese Taipei 3-2 on Wednesday.

But the rising star was upset by Ratchanok Intanon, the former World Championship winner, 21-15, 21-17 in the women's singles, sawing Thailand reached the semifinals for the third time.

"It's a great pity to lose the match. I took most time to defend and seldom got the chance to attack as Intanon is quite aggressive. Overall I learned a lot during Sudirman Cup," said An who couldn't help but burst into tears after the loss.

Other two quarter-finals will see Chinese Taipei battle with Indonesia and Malaysia take on Japan on Friday. 

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