BATC 2024: Malaysia faces China in Asia Badminton Team Finals

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 — An interesting final match of the Badminton Asia Team Championship pits defending champion Malaysia against powerhouse China after both teams improved their form and emerged victorious in the semi-finals in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday. will compete against each other.

Malaysia defeated Japan 3-1, and China defeated South Korea 3-2 to advance to the final.

Lee Zii Jia outscored Kenta Nishimoto 21-18, 21-15 to give Malaysia a decisive 1-0 lead and delight the home fans.

The world No. 10 played with utmost confidence throughout the 51-minute match, searching for the Japanese’s mistakes and unleashing cross-court smashes to devastating effect.

Lee’s confidence was such that he celebrated some points extravagantly, increasing the decibels in the arena.

“When I look back on this game, I can take back a lot of positives. This win gave me confidence. I was surprised at how well I played,” Lee said.

In the men’s doubles match, Aaron Chia and Seo Woo-ik came back from behind to defeat Akira Koga and Taichi Sato 15-21, 21-17, 21-10, doubling their advantage.

The world No. 5 pair turned the match around in the decisive second game by keeping their shuttles low and using their angles to find the winner with a 2-0 aggregate lead.

Japan narrowed the gap with Koki Watanabe’s hard-fought 19-21, 21-12, 21-19 victory over Leong Junhao, but Malaysia lost their second doubles pair, Goh Se Fei-Nur. – Thanks to Izudin’s performance, they earned the final right to participate in the fourth game.

The world No. 22 pair needed 54 minutes to defeat Kenya Mitsuhashi and Hiroki Okamura 21-15, 21-19 to secure a spot in the final for the second consecutive year.

China, on the other hand, relied on its singles shuttlers to qualify for the final spot, with Wen Hongyang, Lu Guangzhu and Lei Lanxi earning points as expected. —AFP

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