Li Xuerui beats Wang Shixian in final to win World Super Series title
The Olympic champion is set to become world No 1 after winning the Super Series singles event
China's Li Xuerui underlined her status as the world's top player by thrashing compatriot Wang Shixian 21-9, 15-4 in the women' singles final of the World Super Series yesterday.
On a day when China took three out of the five titles on offer at Shenzhen Bay Sports Centre, Li was in a class of her own, overwhelming her opponent before Wang was forced to retire in the second game with a back injury.
The 21-year-old London Olympic champion is set to take over the world No 1 spot of another compatriot, Wang Yihan, when the new ranking list is announced this week.
Wang Yihan, who has occupied the top spot since November last year, missed the US$500,000 year-ending spectacle because of injury.
Li believes she still has a way to go before matching the success of other senior members of the mighty mainland squad.
"Perhaps I am more consistent than others and that's why I always get the limelight," said the Chongqing native. "It has been a tough year for many of us, from the London Olympic Games to this Super Series final. I am happy I could keep my composure to the end and clinch the title.
"But I still have a lot to learn in terms of international exposure and that's why I won't call myself the world's top player."
Li first came to world attention when clinching the All England Open title in March, beating Wang Yihan in two games. From Birmingham to the Hong Kong Open in November, she clinched a total of four Super Series titles before grabbing the grand prize in Shenzhen.
China's Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli won the women's doubles, beating Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl of Denmark 21-16, 21-14 in the final.
But the Danes made amends in two other finals, with Joachim Nielsen and Christinna Pedersen pulling off a victory over London Olympic champions Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei, of China, in the mixed doubles (17-21, 21-12, 21-14) and Carsten Mogensen and Mathias Boe beating Hiroyuki Endo and Kenichi Hayakawa, of Japan, in the men's doubles (21-17, 21-19).
Chen Long won the men's singles title for China in the absence of stars Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei, cruising to a 21-12, 21-13 win over compatriot Du Pengyu in the final.