Jorgensen, Taufik on track for final showdown

Left to shoulder Denmark’s expectations in the men’s singles, Jan Jorgensen continued his march by qualifying for the semi-finals of the Denmark Open Super Series in Odense on Friday.

With the withdrawal of top seed and Europe’s No 1 Peter Gade from the tournament, all hopes were on Jorgensen to keep the Danish flag flying and the 23-year-old did not disappoint with a straight games win over Germany’s Marc Zwiebler in the quarter-finals.

Jorgensen, who is also in the race for a berth in the VICTOR BWF Super Series Finals in Chinese Taipei in January (2011), won 21-16, 21-19 to book his place in the semi-finals.

And expectations are building up towards a final showdown with Indonesia’s former Olympic and world champion Taufik Hidayat.

The VICTOR BWF Super Series Finals is a tournament for the top eight ranked players/pairs based on the Super Series Standings. The Denmark Open is the ninth leg of the 12-leg series with the French Open, China Open and Hong Kong Open yet to be played.

Taufik, who is currently 15th in the Super Series Standings, made it through to the semis with a hard fought 21-19, 21-19 win over 2010 All England runner up Kenichi Tago of Japan.

The Japanese tried to engage Taufik in long rallies and tight net play but Taufik was not only equal to the task but beat the Japanese in his own game .

Jorgensen will take on Hong Kong’s Hu Yun in the last four while Taufik will play China’s Du Pengyu.

In the women’s singles, top seed Wang Yihan dropped the first game 13-21 but made amends in the next two games, 21- made it to the last four with a 21-16, 21-7 win over teammate Li Xuerui.

Thailand’s Salakjit Ponsana, who ousted No 2 seed Tien Baun on Thursday, also made it to the semi-finals with a 21-15, 21-15 win over Japan’s Ai Goto.

Joining Yihan and Salakjit in the semi-finals are China’s Liu Xin and Bulgaria’s Petya Nedelcheva.

The Japanese, however, were well represented in the women’s doubles with Miyuki Maeda-Satoko Suetsuna, the top seeds, Mizuki Fujii-Reika Kakiiwa, Shizuka Matsuo-Mami Naito through to the semis.

The task of stopping the Japanese will fall on the shoulders of Russia’s Valeria Sorokina-Nina Vislova. The Russians will take on Miyuki-Satoko for a place in the final.

In the men’s doubles, Germany’s Michael Fuchs-Oliver Roth’s gallant run came to an end  after they were beaten by Indonesia’s Olympic champions Markis Kido-Hendra Setiawan 21-19, 21-18.

The Germans had beaten Denmark’s Jonas Rasmussen-Max Conrad en route to the last eight.

The Japanese are again well poised to make an impact in the men’s doubles with two pairs – Yoshiteru Hirobe-Kenta Kazuno and Hiroyuki Endo-Kenichi Hayakawa – in the semi-finals. Denmark’s top seeds Mathias Boe-Carsten Mogensen are the other pair through to the semi-finals.

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