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BADMINTON

Home hope Jørgensen marches on at worlds

Third seed Jan Ø Jørgensen secured a spot in the final 16 at the Badminton World Championship in Copenhagen, but Denmark's last remaining player on the women's draw was eliminated.

Home hope Jørgensen marches on at worlds
Jan O. Jørgensen of Denmark in action against Eetu Heino of Finland on Wednesday. Photo: Nils Meilvang/Scanpix
Denmark's Jan Ø Jørgensen continued his quest to end China's dominance at the badminton world championships as he breezed into the last 16 of the men's singles in Copenhagen on Wednesday.
 
Third seed Jørgensen, his confidence boosted by June's Indonesian Open title, eased his way past Finland's Eetu Heino 21-9, 21-17 in just under 30 minutes to take his place in the third round.
 
"It was a great game. I'm happy with the outcome and the way I played," said Jørgensen, 26, who along with top seed Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia is seeking to bring an end to China's run of six straight titles.
 
Despite relatively serene progress it wasn't all plain sailing for the Dane as a second-game blip gave his opponent a sniff of forcing a decider before Jørgensen regained his composure to slam that door shut.
 
Jørgensen cited a pre-existing foot problem as his cause for concern that prompted a mid-contest stumble but allayed any fears it might derail his bid to become the first European to lift the world title since compatriot Peter Rasmussen in 1997.
 
"I struggled a bit with my foot during a training camp before the world championships. I slipped during the second set…and lost my concentration a little bit. Everything's fine though," said Jørgensen, who is set to face either Japanese 15th seed Sho Sasaki or Taiwan's Chou Tien-chen for a spot in the quarter-finals.
 
Jørgensen is on a collision course with world number one Lee Chong Wei, who also marched on in his bid for an elusive world championship title on Wednesday.
 
The Malaysian top seed, runner-up at the last two world finals, made light work of Germany's Dieter Domke with Lee cruising to a 21-12, 21-9 victory.
 
"He is a lower-ranked opponent but he put up a fight although I felt confident all the way through," said Lee after dispatching his 43rd-ranked opponent.

 
Meanwhile Wang Yihan eliminated the last remaining Dane, Anna Thea Madsen, from the women's draw.
 
Third seed Wang, the 2011 champion, swatted aside Madsen 21-13, 21-13 and will await the winner of a round two clash between top-ranked European Carolina Marin, the world number 10 from Spain, and Malaysia's Tee Jing Yi.
 
South Korea's Bae Yeon-ju, Taiwan's Tai Tzu-ying and 2013 bronze medallist P.V. Sindhu Of India moved on in routine fashion but tenth seed Porntip Buranaprasertsuk of Thailand was knocked out by in-form Canadian Michelle Li, who is coming off an historic singles gold for her country at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

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MATCH-FIXING

Denmark makes racket over ‘match-fixing’ Chinese badminton players

The national association for badminton in Denmark says the sport’s world federation should punish Chinese players for a match at last week’s Fuzhou China Open which has been described as a “farce”.

Denmark makes racket over 'match-fixing' Chinese badminton players
China's Junhui Li, left, and Yuchen Liu, seen here during a different match, lost in the controversial quarter-final in Fuzhou. AP Photo/Aaron Favila/Ritzau Scanpix

Bo Jensen, director of Badminton Denmark, wants the Badminton World Federation (BWF) to take action after seeing footage of a quarter final match in which He Jiting and Ta Qiang defeated Li Junhui and Liu Yuchen in three sets.

“I am giving my support to the criticism. This is cheating, it’s match-fixing and we can’t accept it,” Jensen said to TV2 Sport.

“In our context, this is just as bad as doping, and it must be punished because if it is not, we will damage the sport’s reputation amongst fans and the many sponsors that are making huge investments at the moment,” he added.

Several Danish badminton players are reported to have been present during the match. Doubles pair Mads Pieler Kolding and Mads Conrad-Petersen lodged a complaint with tournament organisers following the match about the way it had been played.

Another player, Hans-Kristian Vittinghus, later posted an update on Facebook in which he compared the match to a scandal during the 2012 Olympic Games in London, when eight players from China, South Korea and Indonesia were disqualified for deliberately trying to lose.

“This was a complete farce of a match which made me think of the London Olympics when 4 pairs deliberately tried to lose their matches. I kid you not, it was this bad,” Vittinghus wrote, citing errors in play that “just (don’t) happen at this level”.

“Difficult to get hard evidence, but if you have watched a bare minimum of world class badminton, you’d know what just happened,” he also wrote.

The BWF told TV2 Sport that it would not comment on the issue prior to receiving a report from the tournament’s organisers.

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