Reigning world and Olympic champion Chen Long overcame legendary Lin Dan 21-23, 21-11, 21-10 to take his first gold medal at the Badminton Asia Championships here on Sunday. The All-China men’s singles final was a sensational affair, however, Chen got past a potentially difficult opponent with surprising ease, especially in the last two sets, reports Xinhua news agency.
The two shuttlers were in top form in the first set, in which Chen was given a thorough workout by Lin. The newly-crowned Olympic champion had two set points in the opening set, but Lin saved both and took it on his first opportunity 23-21.
However, Chen was not affected by the first-set loss, while Lin began to make numerous mistakes in the following sets and fell at the hands of Chen 21-11, 21-10 very quickly. “This is my seventh Asia Championships and I eventually took the gold medal. It’s too difficult,” said Chen, who won three silver and three bronze medals earlier at these championships.
Lin admitted he could not get focused in the last two sets and therefore made several mistakes.
“However, generally speaking, my performance in this week is relatively good,” said Lin, who just beat Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia in straight sets on Saturday.
Lu Kai and Huang Yaqiong’s stellar season showed no sign of slowing down as the Chinese pair overcame an early 0-6 deficit to beat Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Sapsiree Taerattanachai of Thailand 21-18, 21-11 in the final of the mixed doubles.
The All England Open champions have made the finals of each of the six tournaments they’ve played in this year, starting with the Yonex German Open, and clinched four titles. “The title in All England Open make us much confident than before,” explained Lu.
Another red-hot star of the last few months, Tai Tzu Ying, also made her sixth straight final. The women’s singles icon from Chinese Taipei took her sixth consecutive title by beating Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi 18-21, 21-11, 21-18.
In the final of men’s doubles, sixth seed Li Junhui and Liu Yuchen of China sailed past their teammates Huang Kaixiang and Wang Yilyu 21-14, 21-12.
Japan’s world No.1 Misaki Matsutomo and Ayaka Takahashi showed their dominance in women’s doubles by beating Hye Rin Kim and Yoo Hae Won of South Korea 21-19, 16-21, 21-10.