China rise again at All England

KUALA LUMPUR: China's Li Shi Feng became the latest All England men's singles winner when he won the 113th edition after defeating compatriot Shi Yu Qi in the final yesterday in Birmingham.

Shi Feng, 23, saved four game points in the opening game to win 26-24 and took the next 21-5 against the 27-year-old Yu Qi who had won the All England in 2018.

The victory made Shi Feng the 13th Chinese winner in tournament history, following in the footsteps of Luan Jin (1983), Zhao Jian Hua (1985, 1990), Yang Yang (1989), Liu Jun (1992), Dong Jiong (1997), Sun Jun (1998), Xia Xuan Ze (2000), Chen Hong (2002, 2005), Lin Dan (2004, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2016), Chen Jin (2008) and Chen Long (2013, 2015).

China's 1-2 domination of the men's singles final marked a comeback for the badminton powerhouse at the All England as world No 1 Zheng Si Wei-Huang Ya Qiong made it a double joy by capturing the mixed doubles title,

Si Wei-Ya Qiong, the 2019 champions, beat world No 9 Seung Jae-Chae Yu Jung of South Korea 21-16, 16-21, 21-12 in the final.

In contrast, China ended up empty-handed at last year's All England for the first time since 1996.

South Korea were the other top-performer this year as they made a clean sweep of the two women's events through An Se Young in the singles and Kim So Yeong-Kong Hee Yong in the doubles.

Se Young, 21, outlasted Olympic champion and 2019 winner Chen Yu Fei 21-17, 10-21, 21-19 to end her country's 27-year drought in the All England. The last Korean to be crowned the women's singles champion was Bang Soo Hyun in 1996.

So Yeong-Hee Yong outclassed Baek Ha Na-Lee So Hee 21-5, 21-12 in an all-Korean final.

Hitherto South Korea had not produced any winner since Chang Ye Na-Lee So Hee won the women's doubles title in 2017.

Indonesia continued their dominance in men's doubles with world No 1 Fajar Alfian-Muhammad Rian Ardianto deservedly claiming the crown for the first time after beating compatriots Mohammad Ahsan-Hendra Setiawan 21-17, 21-14.

At 38 and 35 respectively, Hendra and Ahsan's brilliant feat of reaching a fourth final at the All England has surely put many of their younger rivals to shame. Hendra-Ahsan are two-time winners following their triumphs in 2014 and 2019, which saw them defeating Malaysia's Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik.


Men's singles: Li Shi Feng (Chn) bt Shi Yu Qi (Chn) 26-24, 21-5
Doubles: Fajar Alfian-Muhammad Rian Ardianto (Ina) bt Mohammad Ahsan-Hendra Setiawan (Ina) 21-17, 21-14
Women's singles: An Se Young (Kor) bt Chen Yu Fei (Chn) 21-17, 10-21, 21-19
Doubles: Kim So Yeong-Kong Hee Yong (Kor) bt Baek Ha Na-Lee So Hee (Kor) 21-5, 21-12
Mixed doubles: Zheng Si Wei-Huang Ya Qiong (Chn) bt Seo Seung Jae-Chae Yu Jung (Kor) 21-16, 16-21, 21-12.

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