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Jwala-Diju storm into India Open final

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Category: Badminton News
Published: 29 March 2009
Written by BadmintonPlanet.com Hits: 990

Hyderabad: It was eventually left to the doubles team to salvage India's pride at the India Open GP Gold tournament on Saturday. With the more fancied singles players having fallen by Friday, Jwala Gutta and V Diju carried on the momentum of their successful European season with a 21-11 21-12 whipping of Malaysia's Ong Jien Guo and Chong Sook Chin in the semifinals. They will play the accomplished pair of Flandy Limpele and Vita Marissa, bronze medallists at the World Championships, in the final on Sunday. Jwala and Shruti Kurien, however, fell in the women's doubles semifinals. In the women's singles, top seed Pi Hongyan of France will take on Julia Wong of Malaysia in the final.

But what a story unfolded in the men's singles! Taufik Hidayat and Hafiz Hashim, the most stylish stroke-players of this generation, reached the men's singles final with an exhibition of the highest class. While Taufik was masterly in his manipulation of Indonesian teammate Tommy Sugiarto -- killing the youngster sweetly with his placement and courtcraft, Hafiz was all languid brilliance against the speed and power of the young Chinese Chen Long.

 

Grand Prix Gold meet expected to draw the top stars

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Category: Badminton News
Published: 29 March 2009
Written by BadmintonPlanet.com Hits: 880

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will host their second major Open badminton tournament in June and it is expected to attract top notch players, who are determined to be seeded for the World Championships.

Malaysia will now host the Grand Prix Gold event from June 23-28 in Johor Baru. The world meet will be held in Hyderabad from Aug 10-16.

In January, Malaysia hosted the opening leg of the Super Series at Bukit Jalil, where world No. 1 men’s singles shuttler Lee Chong Wei won the home title for the fifth time.

 

Chong Wei’s Indian episode gives BAM much to chew on

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Category: Badminton News
Published: 29 March 2009
Written by BadmintonPlanet.com Hits: 800

WORLD No. 1 men’s singles shuttler Lee Chong Wei thought his first round exit in the Indian Open would be met with sympathy.

But it also drew flak.

But his excuse has only led to many unanswered questions. Where was the team chaperone? Why did he eat outside food in the first place?

Usually, the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) have a chaperone to look after their players. Unfortunately, the team to India was not accompanied by a team manager.

It seems that none of the state badminton presidents was available for the “holiday” trip.

 

Taufik, a class apart

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Category: Badminton News
Published: 29 March 2009
Written by BadmintonPlanet.com Hits: 885

Hyderabad: For the first four days of the Indian Open here, Taufik Hidayat of Indonesia was looked upon by the badminton fans as more a of temperamental player who complained against everything he came across.

On Saturday, one finally realised why Hidayat is still regarded as one of the finest players of the game. Playing against compatriot Tommy Sugiarto in the men’s singles semi-finals, Hidayat unleashed a series of stunning backhand smashes and drop shots that had the spectators on their feet.

Hidayat, the former world and Olympic champion, was at his classic best during his 21-13, 21-9 destruction of Sugiarto, son of former world champion Icuk Sugiarto. He was a treat to watch and he left the audience in awe with his smooth footwork and deceptive shots.

No wonder the current world No.1 declared immediately after the match that he was ready to take the title. “I could play all my shots perfectly… I am focussed and confident of winning the final,” Hidayat said.

“If I win the title, I will be in my top form,” was how the Indonesian assessed the situation. Asked if he could be described as the John McEnroe of badminton, the Indonesian shot back saying: “He was a tennis player and I play badminton.”

To his opponent, Hidayat can be extremely deceptive. He looks relaxed on court and suddenly starts moving sharply. He also keeps the umpire on his toes with regular complaints.

Hidayat says he would definitely hit back were someone to trouble him.

“I think it is the normal tendency of a human being. I am the same Taufik Hidayat both on and off court. You can take a closer look at me and make your own judgement,” he said.

 
Comment (0) Hits: 885

Hidayat, Hashim reach India Open badminton final

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Category: Badminton News
Published: 29 March 2009
Written by BadmintonPlanet.com Hits: 743
Second-seeded Taufik Hidayat of Indonesia will take on Muhammad Hafiz Hashim of Malaysia in the men's final of the India Open badminton tournament.

Hidayat, a former world and Olympic champion, easily beat Indonesia's Tommy Sugiarto 21-13, 21-11 in Saturday's semifinals while Hashim overcame 19-year-old Chen Long of China 21-18, 19-21, 21-15.

"I took some time to get adjusted to the conditions here. But now I'm getting into my rhythm and am feeling good about my game," Hidayat said. "I'm familiar with Tommy's game, I was determined to get off to a good start and not give him any chance to attack."

In the women's semifinals, top-seeded Pi Hongyan of France defeated sixth-seeded Yu Hirayama of Japan 21-7, 21-14 to set up a final against Julia Pei Xian Wong of Malaysia, who rallied to beat Zhang Bei Wen of Singapore 19-21, 21-13, 21-15.

Hashim had a tough opponent in Chen, who had knocked out top-ranked Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia in the first round.

Chen produced a superb rally to win the second game after trailing 16-9. But in the decider, the more experienced Hashim kept the rallies short with crisp smashes and deceptive drops to take a commanding 15-7 lead and never allowed his opponent to stage another comeback.

 
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