Misaki-Ayaka fail to create Badminton Asia history in women's doubles
Japan's Misaki Matsutomo-Ayaka Takahashi's hopes of writing badminton history in the women's doubles in the Badminton Asia Championships went up in smoke on Sunday.
The second seeded Rio Olympics champions were blown away by compatriots Yuki Fukushima- Sayaka Hirota, the third seeds 21-18, 18-21, 21-15 in 80 minutes in the final of this year's Wuhan City of Automobile Badminton Asia Championships in Wuhan.
"We were hoping to write history in women's doubles as no pair has won the title three times in a row...but it does not matter," said Ayaka after the match.
The consolation, however, is they lost to their compatriots.
Misaki-Ayaka were seeded second in Wuhan and first won the title in 2016 and retained it last year. Now ranked No 3 in the world the Japanese pair are working towards the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
They are also Japan's hope in next month's Uber Cup Finals to be played at the Impact Arena in Bangkok from May 20-27.
Their performance in Wuhan as Ayaka is coming back from a back injury which resulted in some poor results for the pair in tournaments.
"Despite the defeat it had been a good tournament for us in Wuhan. In Wuhan and we are more than pleased with our game. We are slowly getting into rhythm but not at our best yet," said Ayaka after the match.
"We are getting back our rhythm. There were some doubts earlier but now we feel more confident in our game," said Ayaka.
Earlier in the men's doubles top seeds Li Junhi-Liu Yuchen of China defeated Japan's No 3 seeds Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda 11-21, 21-10, 21-13 in the final.
Yuki Fukushima-Sayaka Hirota (Jpn) beat Misaki Matsutomo-Ayaka Takahashi 21-18, 18-21, 21-15.
Li Junhui-Liu Yuchen (chn) beat Takeshi Kamura-Keigo Sonoda