Home2021Olympic Pairs Made it to the Semifinal

Olympic Pairs Made it to the Semifinal

The BWF World Tour Finals is a tournament where only the top 8 players/pairs from each category can compete. Lee/Wang and Polii/Rahayu are actually ranked below 8th. However, as the Tokyo 2020 Olympics gold medalists, the two pairs are given the chance to show their skills off at the tournament that provides a total prize of USD1,5 million.

Lee Yang/Wang Chi-lin won gold at the men’s doubles while Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu were the champion in the women’s doubles. This week, at the BWF World Tour Finals 2021, both pairs made it through to the semifinal round as group runner-ups. Lee Yang/Wang Chi-Lin are in the second position in Group A, below Indonesian pair Marcus Fernaldi Gideon/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo. Meanwhile, Polii/Rahayu is right below Kim So-yeong/Kong Hee-yong from Korea in Group A of the women’s doubles.

The draw that was held on Friday (3/12/2021) resulted in Lee Yang/Wang Chi-lin meeting Gideon/Sukamuljo again. It won’t be an easy task for them as in the group elimination round, the Chinese Taipei got defeated in a straight game 21-31, 21-19. The other men’s doubles semifinal will have Ong Yew Sin/Teo Ee Yi from Malaysia against Takuro Hoki/Yugo Kobayashi from Japan.

Unlike the draw in the men’s doubles, Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu won’t be meeting the same opponents from the group elimination round. Instead, they will go against the winner of Group B Nami Matsuyama/Chiharu Shida from Japan. So far, Polii/Rahayu are leading 2-1 in their meeting record with Matsuyama/Shida. However, their last two meetings were quite interesting as the two pairs beat each other. Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu won at the quarterfinal of the Indonesia Masters 2021 that was held last 2 weeks ago in Bali. Just one week after that, in the semifinal of the Indonesia Open 2021, the Japanese couple turned the table. Korean doubles semifinalist Kim So-yeong/Kong Hee-yong is going straight to the final round since their opponent Bulgarian sisters couple Gabriela Stoeva/Stefani Stoeva decided to withdraw due to injury.

In the men’s singles, Viktor Axelsen put Asia at risk of losing the title in this category. Kento Momota, Japanese top seed who often makes tough games for Axelsen, couldn’t make it to the semifinal due to injury. In the semifinal, Axelsen will face India’s representative whom he defeated in the group elimination round, Lakshya Sen. Axelsen won over Sen in straight games 21-15, 21-14 — another victory that proved Axelsen to be unbeatable throughout his meeting record with Lakhsya Sen. In the other semifinal, there’s Lee Zii Jia from Malaysia who will go against Kunlavut Vitidsarn from Thailand. In their last 3 meetings, Lee Zii Jia led with 2-1. It was in their last meeting, at the Swiss Open 2021, where Lee got defeated by Vitidsarn 18-21, 10-21.

Meanwhile, in the women’s singles, An Seyoung’s supremacy is a little shaken. The champion of the last 2 events, the Indonesia Masters 2021 and Indonesia Open 2021, made it to the semifinal as a group runner-up. In the group elimination round of Group B, she got defeated by her longtime rival Akane Yamaguchi from Japan 14-21, 21-18, 16-21. Luckily, in the semifinal, the two won’t have to face each other. An Seyoung will go against the champion of Group A Pornpawee Chochuwong from Thailand. Akane Yamaguchi, on the other hand, will meet P.V. Sindhu from India.

 

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