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17 May 2009

Sudirman Cup

Though have been busy with translating the proverbs (my so called part time job), I would never missed the chance to watch badminton matches. This time, its the Sudirman Cup. Sudirman Cup is the world mixed team badminton championship which takes place every 2 years. The Cup was named after Dick Sudirman, a former Indonesian badminton player and the founder of the Badminton Association of Indonesia. There is no prize money in the Cup, players play for their respective countries and to earn Badminton World Federation world ranking points and national prestige.

This year, Malaysia made it to the semifinal, but was knocked out by China. It was a good achievement by the Malaysian team, as Malaysia had not reached so far before. I was not able to watched the semifinal match between Malaysia and China, as I went to autograph signing session. Anyway, I did watched the repeat matches today (that's a good thing of owning Astro!). 

Well, final is always an exciting games, no matter what sports it is. This year's finalist were China and Korea. The first match was mixed doubles, followed by men's single, men's doubles, lady's single and ladies' doubles. If any team won 3 matches continuosly, then there is no need to play the remaining matches, coz obviously it won't help the lossing team. 

If South Koreans were to pull off a shock victory in the Cup, they needed to win the mixed double event. As expected, the Koreans sent out their greatest mixed pair-the Beijing Olympic gold medalists-Lee Yong-dae and Lee Hyo-jung, while China sent out a new pair of Zheng Bo and Yu Yang, who had not partnered before. But these does not help the Korean-the pair lost out to the Chinese in 3 sets. It was a great combination from the Chinese pair, though they were a lil' bit shacky in the opening match, where they lost quite some points, and eventually lost the set. But credicts to the Korean pair, as they put up a great fight in the 2nd and 3rd set, before bowing out.

Then, it was the men's single match, between Lin Dan and Park Sung-hwan. Before the match, I predicted that Lin Dan will win the match easily, as I think he is stronger than Park. Though he won the first set, Park catched up during the 2nd set when Lin Dan was leading, and fight better during this set. Probably he had figure out the way Lin played. But he lost out to Lin after a 20++minutes fight. There were not much fun to watch men's/women's single match, as it was not fast enough. I mean, it's just 2 players passing the shuttlecock back and forward and if there are interesting scenes, then it would be when someone doing jumping smash or playing at the net. A long rally it's not fun either, it's just wasting the players energy.

China were now 2-0 ahead of the South Koreans.

So, the next match was a crucial one, either China win it and take home the 80cm high with 22 carat of gold-plated solid silver Cup, or South Korea win it and both countries continue to play the remaining matches. Both countries sent off their most talented players, South Korean pair of Lee Young-dae and Jung Jae-sung, and the Chinese pair of Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng. Lee Young-dae had already played during the mixed doubles' event, hence he was marked by the Chinese pair. For your information, players who had played at other matches before will still feel exauhsted though had been resting for 1++hours. It is not easy to recover your strength. So, the Chinese pair won easily in the 1st set. But the Korean pairs make it hard for the Chinese pair when they won the 2nd set, where the Chinese make a lot of mistakes. During the 3rd set, the Korean was leading, before being catched up by the Chinese pair. Both pairs played well, where they catched up each other, and at times, they were at the same points. At 19 all, Fu Haifeng make it the game point for the Chinese, and they eventually won the set and match when the passing shuttlecock from the Korean pair was out of the line. End game. Kudos to all the 4 players, who played so hard and made the match so interesting, making me and my dad shout aloud and made me nearly cried when my favourite pair nearly lost out! 

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