China’s Olympic champion Chen Long needs 86 minutes to overcome Hong Kong’s Angus Ng
The veteran mainland star advances to the semi-finals of the Asian Championships along with Japan’s Momota and Lee Chong Wei
Hong Kong’s Angus Ng Ka-long kept China’s Olympic champion Chen Long on court for 86 minutes before falling in the quarter-finals of the Asian Championships in Wuhan yesterday.
Ng got off to a strong start by taking the first game 24-22 but the powerful Chen showed greater stamina as he fought back to take the next two games 21-15, 21-17 to reach the semi-finals.
“I have played Ng several times before and it was never easy, the same as today” said Chen, who now holds a 3-1 head-to-head over Ng. “But I have had full preparation for the match and that’s why I can come out the eventual winner.”
Japan’s Kento Momota made an impressive return to top-tier badminton by reaching the last four.
The former world number two, who spent a year out over a gambling scandal back home and returned in July last year, was in superb form against Chou Tien-chen, of Taiwan, the number seven seed.
It took slightly more than half an hour before unseeded Momota claimed an easy 21-5, 21-13 victory in his quarter-final.
The Japanese player, at one time the favourite for the 2016 Rio Games gold medal before his suspension by the Japan authorities, was also yesterday qualified to take part in the World Championships in Nanjing this summer after his comeback.
Momota already showed a glimpse of his form when he took down world No 4 and reigning All England champion Shi Yuqi, of China, in the previous round. But he will be facing a stern test before meeting Lee Chong Wei, of Malaysia, for a place in the final.
Lee made no mistake again against top seed Kidambi Srikanth, beating the Indian ace for the second time in two weeks after their clash in the Commonwealth Games final in Gold Coast. Lee advanced after a quick fire 21-12, 21-15 victory in 31 minutes.