May 13, 2010


Host Malaysia face defending champion China while Japan take on Indonesia in the Thomas Cup semifinals at Putra Stadium on Friday.

Muhd Hafiz Hashim, the 2003 All England champion, clinched the winning point for Malaysia's 3-2 victory over Denmark in a tense quarterfinal, after easily disposing Joachim Persson 21-12, 21-10, thus repeating the 2002 Guangzhou feat when he won the deciding match against Bao Chun Lai.

"I am happy to have contributed the winning point for Malaysia's victory," said Hafiz.

In Guangzhou, Malaysia beat China 3-1 in the semis, at their home ground before bowing out 2-3 to Indonesia in the finals.

In today's earlier quarterfinal matches, China beat South Korea 3-0, Japan defeated Germany 3-1 and Indonesia beat India 3-0 to book their respective berths.

Against the Danes Wednesday night, World number one men's singles player Datuk Lee Chong Wei set the path for Malaysia's victory after beating an injured Peter Hoeg Gade 21-17, 21-17 in 49 minutes for the first point.

Gade who was trailing Chong Wei 11-15 in the first game, suffered an ankle injury while trying to retrieve a shot at the net and had to take a five-minute break to check on the injury.

"That was the turning point as Gade was setting a fast tempo and played aggressively but I managed to follow his pace," Chong Wei who had also beaten the Dane in the final of the Korea Open Super Series in January, told reporters after the match.

World number one pair Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong later justified their seeding by beating number four seeds Carsten Mogensen/Mathias Boe 21-17, 21-19 in 41 minutes to give Malaysia a 2-0 lead.

Malaysia's second singles, Wong Choong Hann, however failed to deliver the much needed winning point, bowing out 20-22, 21-16, 18-21 to world number nine, Jan O Jorgensen.

Choong Hann, playing in the his sixth Thomas Cup edition, however, gave his opponent a run for the money, playing point-for-point and dragging the tie to a deciding set.

Jorgensen took the first set 22-20 but Choong Hann came back strongly to take the second 21-16 but the Dane moved into overdrive to take the deciding set 21-18 to give Denmark their first point.

The fourth match of the tie saw Malaysia field a scratch pair of Mohd Zakry Abdul Latif/Hoon Tien How against this year's All England's champion, Lars Paaske/Jonas Rasmussen.

Although the scratch Malaysian pair put up a spirited display to win the first set 26-24, they lost the second 12-21 and despite a close fight, lost the deciding game 19-21.

The win saw Denmark level the tie at 2-2 and called on yesterday's villain Hafiz, who lost his deciding match to Japan's Shoji Sato in the 2-3 defeat, to the fore.

The lanky Hafiz however, gave a polished display today to earn the winning point that kept Malaysia's hopes of repeating the 1992 feat very much alive.

In another quarterfinal match, Japan beat Germany 3-1, to clinch a place in the semis and face Indonesia.


  1. Our weakness has always been mental strength. Sure god knows if Chong Wei could finally defeat Lin Dan etc ... but if we're determined enough things might happen like we did in Guangzhou. Plus China seemed a bit confident, Yingbo thought the Danes would've gone through.

  2. Malaysia 2 China 3

  3. At least you got it right when the rest were building castles around... Push for changes otherwise badminton will be in the same road with Football.