SUDIRMAN CUP 2011 Final – China wins 4th straight in 3

Team China gave its home crowd in Qingdao plenty to scream about as the badminton powerhouse blanked Denmark to win its fourth Sudirman Cup in a row. By Don Hearn, […]

Team China gave its home crowd in Qingdao plenty to scream about as the badminton powerhouse blanked Denmark to win its fourth in a row.

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

Both Denmark and China came into Sunday’s final with their line-ups well thought through.  China had again fielded Ma Jin and Xu Chen – both a successful partnership and an unknown quantity for many pairs – against Denmark, whose Fischer Nielsen/Pedersen (photo) had won their last two meetings with world #1 Zhang/Zhao.  China also lined up Wang Xin for women’s singles, she of the 6 unanswered wins against Tine Baun.

Denmark, for their part, seemed determined to inject the element of surprise into the men’s doubles.  Breaking up their winless top men’s doubles pair, they paired Carsten Mogensen with Jonas Rasmussen, who also was successful in his last meeting with the great Cai/Fu.

Ma’s Mastery of the net

Ma Jin and Xu Chen looked much more in control in their opening match of the final.  Ma Jin was all over the front area and she and Xu Chen kept the pressure on, remained relatively error-free, and pummelled the Danes 21-14, 21-14.  So absolutely were they dominated that the Danish pair’s only lead came at 1-0 at the start of the second game.

Lin Dan seemed to be having his way against Peter Gade through most of the first game of the men’s singles but Gade continued to cover the whole court and began to find the openings on Lin’s side of the net and soon rallied to trail by only two late in the game at 16-18.

Lin was able to power through to finish the first game 21-18 and raced out to another big lead in the second game.  Gade had several exchanges with the umpire over Lin Dan’s behaviour on court, including the Chinese star’s immediate walk to the towels for the interval before the line judge had even made the call on Gade’s smash down the sideline.

The Danish veteran did mount another challenge, closing to 9-12, but Lin Dan’s 9-2 run, punctuated by some impossibly steep and well-placed smashes, closed out the match and put China up by a commanding 2 matches to nil.

Scratch pairing makes last gasp

In the first game of the men’s doubles, Denmark’s pairing strategy appeared to be bearing fruit as the Danes kept the Chinese aces guessing and played superb defense.  Rasmussen and Mogensen snuck into the point position at the interval and continued to open up a 15-10 lead, only to see the Chinese reel them in with a 9-1 sequence of points that ended the game 21-17 and left China a game away from securing the Cup.

China’s surge came much earlier in the second game as the Danes just could not keep the powerful twosome off the attack.  The underdogs pursued as best they could but the game continued to slip away until it was all over at 21-13, after a pair of errors from the Danish side.

This fourth straight Sudirman victory equalled China’s previous string from 1995 to 2001 but only two of those finals were clean sheets, while each of their Sudirman Cup final victories since the Cup last eluded them in 2003 have finished 3-0.  As if any further testament were needed to increasing Chinese domination of world badminton, only one major international team championship on the senior level has eluded China since 2003.

Final results:

XD: Xu Chen / Ma Jin (CHN) beat Joachim Fischer Nielsen / Christinna Pedersen (DEN) 21-14, 21-14
MS: Lin Dan (CHN) beat Peter Gade (DEN) 21-16, 21-11
MD: Cai Yun / Fu Haifeng (CHN) beat Carsten Mogensen / Jonas Rasmussen (DEN) 21-17, 21-13
WS: Wang Xin (CHN) vs. Tine Baun (DEN) (not played)
WD: Yu Yang / Wang Xiaoli (CHN) vs. Christinna Pedersen / Kamilla Rytter Juhl (DEN) (not played)

China 3 – 0 Denmark

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 @