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Lin, Chen set up semifinal meeting at All England Open

March 6, 2015

BIRMINGHAM, England (AP) — Olympic champion Lin Dan and world champion Chen Long set up an eagerly-anticipated semifinal at the All England Open after contrasting wins on Friday.

Lin edged past Kento Momota of Japan 21-18, 21-19 in a tight quarterfinal, while Chen produced a masterful performance to defeat Chou Tien Chen of Taiwan 21-11, 21-11.

Momota fought back from 18-12 down in the second, forcing Lin into uncharacteristic errors.

“He played really quick so I had to try and prevent him from attacking,” Lin said. “I lost concentration a little but I stayed calm and finished the game.”

Lin and Chen’s meeting will be their first on the Superseries circuit since Lin won a world championship encounter in 2013.

Earlier, Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, who became the youngest ever world champion in 2013, had to retire from her quarterfinal at the All England Open because of cramps late in the deciding game.

Ratchanok led 11-5 in the decider against Sun Yu of China, but her opponent rallied for a 19-13 lead before the Thai player fell awkwardly going for a backhand return.

After several minutes on the ground, Ratchanok shook hands with Sun, who advanced to the semifinals for the first time with an 11-21, 21-19, 19-13 victory.

“We are good friends off court and I feel for her,” Sun said. “I wish her all the best in her recovery.”

She will next play Saina Nehwal, who overturned an unwanted record against Wang Yihan as the Indian secured her place in the semifinals.

Nehwal, who hadn’t beaten Wang outright in nine previous encounters, beat Wang 21-19, 21-6.

Tai Tzu Ying, the 20-year-old who won the BWF Superseries Finals in December, upset second-seeded Sung Ji-hyun of South Korea. She plays world champion Carolina Marin in the last four.

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