China dominate Asia badminton semi-finals
Li Xuerui of China hits a return against Sayaka Takahashi of Japan in their women's singles semi-final of the Badminton Asia Championships in Taipei on April 20, 2013. Li Xuerui won the match 21-18, 18-21, 21-12.
Li was locked in a tight fight with Japan's Sayaka Takahashi until she claimed a wider lead in the third game to win 21-18, 18-21, 21-12. Another top Chinese player Wang Yihan saw off Japanese Eriko Hirose 21-12, 21-6.
China also took top spots in the men's singles. Top seed Chen Long beat Malaysia's Chong Wei Feng 21-17, 21-15 while Du Pengyu knocked off fellow Chinese Wang Zhengming 21-16, 11-6.
With some of their top Asian rivals skipping the event, Chinese players had a strong chance of replicating their achievement at the Olympics by winning all five titles on offer.
However, Chinese Olympic champion Lin Dan withdrew from the tournament over a shoulder injury on Friday. Lin has won every major title but had been off the scene since the Olympic final last August until this tournament.
China's hopes for men's doubles titles also ended on Friday when both of their teams lost out in the quarter-finals.
Controversial Chinese women's doubles team Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli saw off South Korea's Ko A-Ra and Yoo Hae-Won 21-15, 21-17. The duo were booted out of the Olympics in a playing-to-lose scandal that rocked the London Games.
Fellow Chinese women's duo Ma Jin and Tang Jinhua beat Indonesia's Gebby Ristiyani Imawan and Tiara Rosalia Nuraidah 21-18, 21-8.
China's mixed doubles team Zhao Yunlei and Zhang Nan defeated Hong Kong's Lee Chun-hei and Chau Hoi-wah 21-16, 21-11.
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