Dan leads China to memorable victory

Dan leads China to memorable victory

Lin Dan led hosts China to an emphatic victory over South Korea in the Thomas Cup final on Sunday, sending a strong message to China’s rivals in the London Olympics.

Widely regarded as the best player of all time and a sporting hero in China, Lin threw his t-shirt into the Wuhan crowd after his side were far too good in seeing off the Koreans 3-0 — repeating the feat of the women’s team on Saturday in the Uber Cup, when they beat the Koreans.

“Lots went through my mind last night. I don’t know how many more Thomas Cups I’ll play. This one is at home and I wanted to put on a good show,” said 28-year-old Lin.

The reigning Olympic champion showed no signs of tiredness or nerves in his match against Lee Hyun-Il for the 21-14, 21-17 as China picked up their fifth consecutive Thomas Cup title and ninth since the men’s tournament began in 1949.

South Korea’s doubles pairing put up a fight to rescue the final, but when they failed to convert a handful of game points the Chinese duo punished them, with Fu Haifeng ripping off his t-shirt as they won 21-16, 25-23.

It was left to the towering Chen Long to wrap up the match for his country in the second singles. He out-classed the in-form Shon Wan-Ho, with some exquisite backhand slices, to win 21-9, 21-13.

In the women’s section, China reclaimed the Uber Cup badminton beating South Korea 3-0. It was China’s 12th Uber Cup win. World No 1 Wang Yihan didn’t lose a single set at the 2012 edition until conceding one to Sung Ji Hyun. Leading 14-12 lead in the first set, Wang allowed Sung to grab nine straight points for a 21-14 scoreline.

Wang saved four straight match points to win the second set 22-20 and swept the third set 21-13.

World top women’s doubles duo of Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli sent China one step nearer to the Cup as they breezed through Kim Min Jung and Ha Jung Eun 21-15, 21-13.

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