World Championships: Lin Dan storms into final, to face Axelsen

It seems, at 33, Lin Dan is going stronger. The Chinese shuttler was on a rampage on Saturday as he downed No. 1 seed San Wan Ho 21-17, 21-14 to storm into the final of the BWF World Championships. He will square off against Denmark’s Viktor Axelsen.

Lin Dan exults after drubbing No. 1 seed San Wan Ho 21-17, 21-14 in the semifinals of the BWF World Championships on Saturday.   -  AFP

It seems, at 33, Lin Dan is going stronger. The Chinese shuttler was on a rampage on Saturday as he downed No. 1 seed San Wan Ho 21-17, 21-14 to storm into the final of the BWF World Championships.

The Chinese ace will square off against Denmark’s Viktor Axelsen, who took revenge over China’s defending champion Chen Long. Dan, who last won the title in 2013, outsmarted the 29-year-old South Korean quite convincingly. A run of five points in a row from 16-15 down helped seal the first game and he pressed home his advantage midway through the second. "Everyone is talking about my age, but I have proved I can still play at a high level," he said. "Men's singles is very tough these days, it is a very hard route to the final.

"I always feel nervous before big matches, but I am very happy that I have had great support here.

"I watched Viktor's semi-final and he's playing very well. Tomorrow is the last match and I will be giving 1000 per cent."

In a surprisingly short match, the Danish third seed upset the Olympic champion 21-9, 21-10 in just 39 minutes to book the final date with another old boy of the game.

Chen had won the title in 2014 and 2015 and added the Olympic gold medal in Rio de Janeiro last year, beating Axelsen in the semi-finals on his way to glory.

“I am a little out of words,” said Axelsen. “I never expected to win so comfortably and I am so very happy. I made very few mistakes today,” he said.

The last Danish winner was Peter Rasmussen 20 years ago, with his title also coming in Glasgow. The only other Dane to win the title was Flemming Delfs at the inaugural 1977 championships.

(With inputs from agencies)