MALAYSIA OPEN 2014 SF – Goh/Lim’s first, Chong Wei’s last?

After the series of familiar events at the semi-finals this evening, Goh V Shem / Lim Khim Wah passed a personal milestone of entering their first ever Superseries finals, while […]

After the series of familiar events at the semi-finals this evening, Goh V Shem / Lim Khim Wah passed a personal milestone of entering their first ever finals, while Lee Chong Wei looks forward to clinching his 10th – and possibly last – home ground title.

By Ooi Ee Lyn, Badzine Correspondent live in Kuala Lumpur. Photos: Yves Lacroix for Badmintonphoto (live)

The men’s singles semi-finals this evening at the Maybank Superseries Premier was almost a repeat of the same round at the event last year, with Lee Chong Wei playing against Jan O. Jorgensen, and Kenichi Tago against an Indonesian opponent. The only difference was that instead of Sony Dwi Kuncoro, it was Tommy Sugiarto’s turn to represent his country in the semi-finals in Malaysia.

Like how Sony did it last year, Tommy Sugiarto took the match from Kenichi Tago, and earned the chance to be one of the stars to show up on Sunday. On the other hand, despite expecting a tough match, Lee Chong Wei received his spot in the finals with Jan O. Jorgensen (pictured) retiring from the match at the beginning of the second game.

“I felt something during the warm-up and I felt like I couldn’t really stand on my right leg since the first game,” said Jorgensen.  “In the end of the first game, I thought the pain was too much to move. I tried in the second to see if I could do more, but unfortunately I couldn’t.

“I think this is due to the hard program and all the tournaments. I was sick right after the Superseries Finals. I had no badminton for 14 days and only trained for five days for this tournament. I think my body talks for itself now.

“It’s slowly developing. I didn’t pull anything,” explained Jorgensen about his muscular discomfort. “I felt it slightly during the last few rallies yesterday as well, and I thought there’s just no point in going on and making it worst. I need to take care of myself.”

Chong Wei: “This might be my last Malaysia Open.”

“We were quite close in the first game, and I thought his leg pain was a psychological tactic,” said Chong Wei.  “I only realised it was a real injury when he went to the side [after the first game]. He tried three points in the second game, and I think he couldn’t move anymore, so he gave up that match.

“I’ll prepare myself for the toughest match tomorrow. This might be my last match at the Malaysia Open, and I hope to maintain and win my 10th title. It doesn’t matter how tough it gets. I will hang on till the end,” indicated the Malaysian hero who got his 9th Malaysia Open title last year.

Goh/Lim aims at first Superseries title

Four years after the last time a Malaysian men’s doubles pair made it into the finals of the home ground event, Goh V Shem / Lim Khim Wah (pictured top) beat Angga Pratama / Ryan Agung Saputra (pictured), and marched into their first ever Superseries finals, all while finally planting a Malaysian flag in the men’s doubles finals at home after a three-year hiatus.

“When we were trailing in the games, the crowd’s support boosted our confidence and gave us the motivation to fight for Malaysia. We will try harder at the final tomorrow,” said Goh.

Goh/Lim will have to prevail again, against Chai Biao / Hong Wei – who won their match against Hiroyuki Endo / Kenichi Hayakawa – before they can finally taste the win of their first Superseries title.

Familiar matchups, new outcomes

The semi-finals of the mixed doubles saw a repeat of the London Olympics semi-finals – with the same four pairs playing in the same matchups as they had in London. However, while it was Zhang Nan / Zhao Yunlei and Xu Chen / Ma Jin who made it into the finals back then, this time around Joachim Fischer Nielsen / Christinna Pedersen were the ones who got the better of their opponents – the same case as it was at the final round of the Superseries Finals in Kuala Lumpur last month. Xu/Ma, on the other hand, enjoyed the same fate of ousting Tontowi Ahmad / Liliyana Natsir to play in the finals.

Last year’s runners-up Misaki Matsutomo / Ayaka Takahashi (pictured) defeated Reika Kakiiwa / Miyuki Maeda in the women’s doubles to play Bao Yixin – again – and Tang Jinhua in the finals. Bao Yixin may have won the title with Tian Qing last year, but the Japanese are now here with no intent to give in to them.

In the women’s singles division, Bae Yeon Ju was forced to accept her 11th consecutive loss against Wang Shixian as she went down to the same-aged Chinese in two straight games. Wang and Li Xuerui will fight among themselves for the title tomorrow.

Click here for complete semi-final results

About Ee-Lyn Ooi