WORLDS 2011 R16 – Hans-Kristian: “I’m next in line”

Hans-Kristian Vittinghus is one of the two shuttlers no one expected to reach the quarters of the Yonex BWf World Championships. He did and is now looking at a possible […]

Hans-Kristian Vittinghus is one of the two shuttlers no one expected to reach the quarters of the Yonex BWf . He did and is now looking at a possible medal, only weeks after being told he would participate in this event. Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan, meanwhile, showed the exit to Korea’s 2 best shuttlers.

By Tarek Hafi, Badzine Correspondent.  Photos: Badmintonphoto (live)

One must have a bit of luck to become a top player – or earn a World Championship medal. Hans Kristian Vittinghus (pictured) had just that – on top of his hard work – to make it to the quarter-finals of the ongoing Yonex BWF World Championships in London. The Danish shuttler should have been on holidays in Monaco with team-mate Joachim Persson at this very time. But instead of a sandy beach, he’s stuck in a badminton hall. Instead of bright sun in the French Riviera, he has to cope with the bright spots of the Wembley Stadium. But the young man couldn’t be happier.

This is just an amazing feeling. I’ve had a lot of luck since the beginning of the tournament, said Hans-Kristian after his match.   First, I was called up after Jan [Jorgensen]got injured as the first reserved on the list. Then, since Jan got injured, I got to play Hu Yun, who was one of the lower seeded players and that was a good draw for me – and then, yesterday, Derek Wong beat Taufik, which made my way to the quarter-finals a lot easier. Of course, I was prepared and I would have liked to play a top shuttler like Taufik, but today, going on court, I was very confident and all worked well for me.

Vittinghus behaved, during his match against the Singaporean wonder Derek Wong, like he’d been many times in the round of 16 of a major event. Staying calm, he controlled the rallies in spite of Wong’s smashes down the lines.  He took the first game 21-16 while the 50 Danish spectators, waving a giant flag, were cheering for him standing at half time. The second game was even faster, as the Dane was in control from start to finish for a final 21-10 success.

It’s just an amazing feeling to be in the quarter-final. Of course, playing well here gives me ideas as I’m dreaming of qualifying for the London Olympics. But I know it will be very tough. Peter [Gade] is our number one and Jan [Jorgensen] is way ahead of me with other top players too. But I’m next in line, and if I’m needed, I’ll be prepared,” said the smiling Dane, wearing his “lucky” Solibad logo on his black shirt.

He will have to play at his best in the quarter-final, where he was probably going to meet Chen Jin. “I’ve played him twice this year and I got close to him. I’ve made some progresses and I play more confidently, plus I have nothing to lose, so, I’ll go for it,” he added.

Lin, Lee easily into quarters

Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan both had two-game victories over Korean shuttlers. Unlike last year, where Park Sung Hwan had defeated Lin Dan in the third round, the Olympic Champion played a very solid badminton game to ensure he’ll get a shot at taking back a crown he’s already worn 3 times. Lin beat Lee Hyun Il (pictured) 21-16, 21-13.

Top seed Lee Chong Wei once again played around with his opponent of the day – the very Park Sung Hwan who had defeated Lin Dan in Paris last summer. In no time, Chong Wei was back stretching after an impressive 21-10, 21-5 win. With his expected quarter-final opponent Chen Long out of his way, the world number one should win his following match against either Kevin Cordon or Pablo Abian of Spain and is to meet with either Chen Jin or Vitthingus.

Peter Gade, Nguyen Tien Minh and Boonsak Ponsana, the highest seeds of the lower draw apart from Lin Dan (pictured) were playing later in the day.

All results HERE

Live streaming (except for some countries which are geo-blocked) HERE

About Tarek Hafi