Home2018Chong Wei still the master as he whips Srikanth for a place...

Chong Wei still the master as he whips Srikanth for a place in the semis

Malaysian ace Lee Chong Wei was in a class of his own he outclassed India's K.Srikanth in straight games 21-12, 21-15 to march into the men's singles quarter-finals in the Wuhan City of Automobile Badminton Asia Championships in Wuhan on Friday.

In the "Battle of former World No 1s" the Malaysian gave a masterly display of badminton to stretch his head to head count to 6-1. The match was a repeat of this Commonwealth Games final in Gold Coast between Chong Wei and Srikanth with Malaysian taking the men's singles gold.

Incidentally, Srikanth inflicted the only defeat on Chong Wei also in Gold Coast – when he beat the Malaysian in the team final won by India 3-1.

However, at the Wuhan Sports Center on Friday it was Chong Wei who showed that he has still plenty of badminton in him – moving in for the kill at every opportunity that came his way and Srikanth was left in a daze.

Chong Wei took the break at 11-4 and 14-6 before wrapping up the first game at 21-12 in 13 minutes. In the second it there was some resistance from Srikanth but Chong Wei was never in danger of losing.

"I was never in the game and gave him plenty of opportunities. I wanted an error free game but it turned out to be my worst match…I have never played so badly," said Srikanth.

"I played much better in the first round. It is disappointing to lose in this manner."

For Chong Wei it was a case of riding on the momentum of winning the gold medal in Gold Coast when he beat Srikanth 19-21, 21-14, 21-14 in the final for his third Commonwealth Games title.

"The win is important for me to go as far as possible in Wuhan," said Chong Wei, a two-time winner of the title  – in 2006 and 2016. He was beaten by Lin Dan in the semi-finals last year.
In Saturday's semi-finals Chong Wei will face Japan's Kento Momota who demolished Chou-Tien-chen 21-5, 21-13 in 39 minutes.

Meanwhile, defending champion Chen Long of China stayed on course with a hard fought three-game battle against a gritty Angus Ng Ka Long of Hong Kong before prevailing 22-24, 21-15, 21-17 in a marathon 86-minute match.

Chen Long blamed himself for going three-games for his match against Ka Long and said: "I should have won the first game and finished off the match in two games.

"Still, I am happy to be in the semi-finals and hope to go beyond that," said the hometown hero who hails from Hubei Province who beat Lin Dan for his first Badminton Asia title last year.

RESULTS (SELECTED) 

Lee Chong Wei (Mas) beat K. Srikanth (Ind) 21-12, 21-15
Kento Momota (Jpn) beat Chou Tien-chen (Tpe) 21-5, 21-13
Chen Long (Chn) beat Angus Ng Ka Long (Hkg) 22-24, 21-15, 21-17
 

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