HONG KONG OPEN 2009 Finals – Hong Kong goes to the Poles

Poland’s Robert Mateusiak and Nadiezda Kostiuczyk (pictured) created history by clinching their first ever Super Series title during their first ever Super Series final, at the same time banking some […]

Poland’s Robert Mateusiak and Nadiezda Kostiuczyk (pictured) created history by clinching their first ever Super Series title during their first ever Super Series final, at the same time banking some pride Europe before Danish losses that were to come in the men’s singles and doubles.  Korea also had a share of glory as well with their best men’s doubles duo and defending champions Jung Jae Sung and Lee Yong Dae winning their first title after a three-month hiatus on the international stage.

By Tarek HAFI, Badzine Correspondent.  Photos: BadmintonPhoto (live)

We need to go back to 2006 to see last time a Polish pair stepped onto a podium’s highest step, during the Denmark Open, a few months before the Super Series system created a new era.  Back then, the Denmark Open was still a five star event, and Nadiezda Kostiuczyk and Kamilla Augustyn ruled the world by taking the number one spot after a fantastic final face-off against Gail Emms and Donna Kellog.  Three years later, Nadiezda Kostiuczyk again made history by taking her first mixed doubles title in a big tournament, accompanied by Robert Mateusiak against the highly decorated Nova Widianto and Lilyana Natsir.  She was once described by Gail Emms as more deceptive than the Chinese, and here, she stuck again, giving Lilyana Natsir a lesson on how to control the net area.

The Olympic Games silver medallists might have been playing their farewell match, as Lilyana Natsir is gearing up to take on the field at the China Open, but now paired with Devin Lahardi Fitriawan.

After almost one year after his Korea Open success where he outplayed Lee Chong Wei in the final, Peter Gade couldn’t repeat his victory over the world number one but tumbled in a splendid three-game battle.  Even though the Dane took control at the net for much of the match, Lee Chong Wei’s smashes had too much pace, as did Lee himself, as he ran down Gade’s best shots and seemed to turn every desperate situation into an attacking opportunity.  Lee managed to take the opening game 21-13.

But Peter Gade is not one to be easily deceived as he released all his superb techniques in the second game, controlling the net with disguised shots that completely fooled Lee Chong Wei, and entertaining the crowd with some fantastic cross-court drop shots.  After taking the second game by the matching  21-13 score, Peter Gade was the one to get the better start in the decider but after an extraordinary round the head defense from Lee Chong Wei, things went better for the world number one, who dominated with his very powerful attacks.  The Malaysian finally took the trophy home after a 21-16 third game victory.

After a three-month hiatus, the mighty Korean pair Jung Jae Sung and Lee Yong Dae (pictured), made a fantastic comeback during this Hong Kong Super Series defending their title to take the trophy home once again.  However theirs was not an easy path through as they met with Denmark’s Lars Paaske and Jonas Rasmussen, the pair who dismissed them during the very first round at the Olympic Games.  Therefore, the Koreans seemed very hesitant during the opening game, often being pressured by the Danes.  The Koreans seemed to be controlled in the first game, finding no way to handle the great touch of Jonas and Lars.  Even if the first game went quickly into the Danes’ pocket, the Koreans had, by then, efficiently analyzed their opponents’ game and were able to add pace to the game.  They slowly got back their confidence and bounced back from 6-11 down to take the lead and finally earn the second game 21-15.  The rubber was a real coup de grace to the Danes.  The gap that opened up between the two pairs was too deep to be filled and Korea earned their second title in Hong Kong by taking the rubber 21-8.

Wang Yihan definitely has no problems dealing with her own teammates these days.  She signed off on her second consecutive victory in her third final in a row.  The very deceptive Jiang Yanjiao couldn’t do anything to control her opponent’s power and stamina as Wang continued to push Jiang to the rear of the court, forcing her to play weakly from her backhand.  Wang Yihan completely dominated every department, from net play to attacking game.  The tall Chinese used offensive clears throughout the whole match, forcing Jiang Yanjiao to play high clears and finishing off the rallies with superb and very well angled smashes.  Wang Yihan, has now fully recovered from her unexpected quarter-final defeat during her own national games to win her second title in a row 21-13, 21-15.

Ma Jin (pictured) and Wang Xiaoli confirmed to the world that they are the real future of the women’s doubles in China and around the globe, beating none other than the current Olympic Champions Du Jing and Yu Yang in a thrilling three-game battle.  Ma Jin and Wang Xiaoli are definitely a pair to consider as future circuit rulers as Gao ling and Huang Sui or Ge Fei and Gu Jun were.  They won their first Hong Kong title 16-21, 21-19, 21-12, making it a third straight Super Series title for the young duo.

For complete semi-final results from the 2009 Yonex-Sunrise Super Series, CLICK HERE

For live results and a selection of the week’s best photos from BadmintonPhoto, CLICK HERE

OUR PARTNER HOTEL IN HONG KONG

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About Tarek Hafi