Hidayat avenges team defeat at Asian Games badminton
Indonesia's Taufik Hidayat avenged his team event defeat by Shon Seung-mo of South Korea on Sunday to enter the men's singles final of the Asian Games badminton competition.india Updated: Oct 13, 2002 16:58 IST
Indonesia's Taufik Hidayat avenged his team event defeat by Shon Seung-mo of South Korea on Sunday to enter the men's singles final of the Asian Games badminton competition.
Hidayat beat Shon 15-10, 15-7 to set up Monday's gold medal match against another South Korean, Lee Hyun-Il, who outclassed reigning world champion H. Hendrawan 15-3, 15-4 in the other semifinal.
Top-seeded Zhou Mi made short work of world champion Gong Ruina 11-1, 11-1 to claim the women's singes gold medal, while the South Korean pair of Kim Dong-moon and Ra Kyung-min won the mixed doubles title.
The top-seeded pair of Kim and Ra beat Thailand's Khunakorn Sudhisodhi and Saralee Thoungthongkam 11-4, 11-0 in the final. Hidayat, the former world No. 1 who is now ranked 14th, outsmashed second-seeded Shon in straight games in the Asian Games' second encounter between the two players.
Shon, who is world ranked seventh, had beaten Hidayat in the team event match which was marred by Hidayat storming off of the court after being upset with line calls.
Hidayat alleged the line calls were biased in favor of the host nation.
Indonesia threatened to concede the final, but it was persuaded by the Asian Badminton Confederation officials to resume the team event's gold-medal match after a two-hour interruption.
Keeping in mind the controversy, organizers adopted a cautious approach for both men's singles semifinals that featured matches between South Korean and Indonesian players.
Two international match referees stood at strategic positions, behind the line judges, to observe any disputed calls. "I was confident of winning the semifinal if I could get my shots going and was not disturbed by any wrong line calls," Hidayat said.
"I was determined to win this match and put the record straight."
"He was simply too good today, just unstoppable," Shon said. Lee, the world No. 13, said he benefitted from playing at a brisk speed against Hendrawan.
"Hendrawan seemed slow in his court movement, so I concentrated on speed," said Lee. "The scores tell the exact story, but frankly I did not expect to win the semifinal so easily." Zhou, 23, wrapped up the women's singles final in just 25 minutes as she added the Asian Games crown to this year's Japan Open and Singapore Open titles.
"I was hoping to win the title on my current form," said Zhou, who is from China's Guangxi province.