YOUTH OLYMPICS 2014 SF – Familiar finals

It is all about the repeats at the Nanjing Youth Olympics as the semi-final results set up repeats of both singles finals from this year’s World Junior Championships while He […]

It is all about the repeats at the Nanjing as the semi-final results set up repeats of both singles finals from this year’s World Championships while He Bingjiao narrowly missed out on the opportunity to go for two golds on Friday.

By Don Hearn.  Photos: Chee Ying Fan (archives)

China’s He Bingjiao (pictured) took care of world #22 Busanan Ongbamrungphan for the second time this year to book an appearance in the girls’ singles final at the Nanjing Youth Olympics.  The Thai, who has both a Grand Prix and a Grand Prix Gold title to her name, has been by far the highest-ranked junior ever since Ratchanok and Sindhu graduated to the senior circuit this year but she has been unable to defeat He this year.

He Bingjiao made it past Busanan in the quarter-finals on her way to a runner-up finish at the World Juniors and on Thursday in Nanjing, she spent only slightly longer on court before seeing off the Thai 21-14, 21-16.  He was also involved in the last match of the evening, where she and Sachin Premashan Dias Angodavidanalage of Sri Lanka fell in three games to Kanta Tsuneyama of Japan and Chinese Taipei’s Lee Chia Hsin in the mixed-nation mixed doubles event.  He will play her compatriot Qin Jinjing for the bronze medal on Friday as Qin and Thailand’s Mek Narongrit went down tamely to unseeded Cheam June Wei of Malaysia, playing with Ng Tsz Yau of Hong Kong.

He’s compatriot Lin Guipu (pictured) is playing in his second gold medal final repeat of the tournament.  His first came on Wednesday, when Lin won his quarter-final against Hong Kong’s Lee Cheuk Yiu, one year less a day after beating him to win gold at last year’s Asian Youth Games in the very same hall in Nanjing.  On Thursday, he won a 70-minute marathon semi-final against Indonesia’s Anthony Ginting to book a repeat of this year’s World Junior Championship final against compatriot Shi Yuqi.

Akane Yamaguchi of Japan (pictured) will, like Lin, be looking for repeat gold from the World Juniors and also from Nanjing last summer.  She needed an hour on court to see off Chinese Taipei’s Lee Chia Hsin and book a World Junior Championship final repeat against He Bingjiao.

Akane’s gold medal from last August in Nanjing came in the mixed doubles and while Lee Chia Hsin may have stumbled in the singles, she has a chance to take up that mantle at least.  Lee has been busy in 2014: in addition to reaching the semi-finals of both the U.S. and Canada Opens in women’s doubles and making it to five singles semi-finals in International Challenge events in the past year, she also played third singles for Chinese Taipei at the Uber Cup in May.  She may well pose a challenge to He and Yamaguchi in their final year of juniors in 2015.

Click here for complete semi-final results

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 @