Last night, Malaysian mixed doubles pair Goh Liu Ying and Chan Peng Soon fought till the very end of the Rio 2016 mixed doubles badminton finals and earned the country a silver. But for one other world-class shuttler, the games had just begun.
Datuk Lee Chong Wei coolly smashed out Taiwan’s Chou Tien-Chen during the quarterfinals of the Rio Olympics men’s singles badminton 21-9, 21-15 in straight sets.
The Malaysian athlete was significantly leading the game with 12-6 in the middle of the first set. The second set played out to be similar as Chong Wei continued to power through with 11-3 mid-set. The world #1 then wrapped up the match in 40 minutes.
NST quoted Chong Wei as saying, “The fact that my teammates have already made two finals is a source of motivation and I am looking to create history by making it three. I felt comfortable on court and will prepare mentally and physically for the semi-finals.”
Chong Wei is now one step closer to achieving his dream – cinching the elusive Olympic gold medal. But first, he has to go head-to-head with archenemy and 2-time defending champion, Lin Dan of China, in the men’s singles badminton semi-finals.
Lin Dan worked hard to defeat current world India’s Kidambi Srikanth in their quarterfinal match. It was a brave match for the Indian shuttler, who is about a decade younger than Lin Dan, as he valiantly fought tooth and nail against his opponent. Alas, he came up short as the game ended with 21-6, 11-21, 21-18 in Lin Dan’s favour.
It’s a known fact that Lin Dan, one of the best badminton players of all-time, is a master of deception and skilled at bluffing his opponents. A pro at mind games, he has met Chong Wei many times in the past. In fact, previously, Chong Wei lost to Lin Dan in both the men’s singles badminton finals for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics.
The Malaysian shutter, who is now bent on bringing home the gold medal after taking silver in the last 2 Olympic editions, will meet Lin Dan in the Rio 2016 men’s singles semi-finals showdown on Friday at 7:30pm Malaysian time.
As always, we’re cheering you on from home, Datuk. Stay focused, be strong. You have it in you. You can do this!