INDIA OPEN 2012 QF – Shon sends Gade home; self, Chen to London

Shon Wan Ho of Korea scored his first-ever victory over Peter Gade to not only enter his first ever Superseries semi-final but also to earn his ticket to the London […]

Shon Wan Ho of Korea scored his first-ever victory over Peter Gade to not only enter his first ever semi-final but also to earn his ticket to the London Olympics, and secure Chen Jin’s as well.

By Don Hearn, Badzine Correspondent.  Photos: Badmintonphoto (archives)

Korea continues to provide the upsets at the 2012 Yonex-Sunrise Superseries.  After Bae Youn Joo ousted home favourite Saina Nehwal in Thursday’s second round, Shon Wan Ho made sure today that the London Olympics will have the strongest possible men’s singles field, with only two top 16 players missing.

Reaching the semi-finals will give Shon just the point boost he needs to inch ahead of China’s Wang Zhengming and into the world’s top 16.  Moreover, Peter Gade winning in New Delhi was the only case that could have kept Chen Jin out of the top 4, where he needs to be to join compatriots Chen Long and Lin Dan on the flight to England this summer.

Shon had taken games from Danish veteran Peter Gade in most of their six previous meetings but this time, the unseeded Korean – who will turn 24 just before next month’s Thomas Cup Finals – finally made good.

In the first game, Gade seemed to be obliging Shon by instigating plenty of flat, fast exchanges that his opponent was ready and waiting for.  Still, the Dane had plenty of deception and veteran craft and managed to erase the first five game points.  In the second, Gade seemed to step up his attack but Shon responded with astounding defense and held the second seed off to win it 21-18.

“Actually, this was my best match in the last 2 weeks,” said Gade on his Facebook page.  “The speed of my game today was better than my previous matches this week, but Shon Ho did some good choices today and got things to go his way.

“I feel like not much should have happened for me to win this match, but at the moment I lack 10-15 percent in my game in different areas and this is the main reason for my loss.

“A huge thank you to all the Indian supporters at the Siri Stadium who this year, and also last year, were behind me at all times.  Despite my loss today, I take home great memories of this tournament and India in general.”

While Shon may have sealed the deal for Chen Jin, he too had help this week.  With both Hans-Kristian Vittinghus and Wang Zhengming looking strong in the early rounds, it was Taufik Hidayat who finally stopped the tall Chinese #5 just short of his own jump in ranking points, holding him there for Shon to catch.

The afternoon’s upsets just kept coming, too.  First, Juliane Schenk (pictured) of Germany scored her third win in the past year over top seed Wang Shixian.  Then 2011 runners-up Angga Pratama / Ryan Agung Saputra ousted veterans Koo/Tan, but not before the Malaysian aces had themselves edged into the top eight, to ensure Indonesia would be limited to a single pair in London.

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Don Hearn

About Don Hearn

Don Hearn is an Editor and Correspondent who hails from a badminton-loving town in rural Canada. He joined the Badzine team in 2006 to provide coverage of the Korean badminton scene and is committed to helping Badzine to promote badminton to the place it deserves as a global sport. Contact him at: don @