China’s in-form shuttler Li Xuerui continued her impressive run as she secured her place in Women’s Singles semi-final after giving a severe lesson to the higher ranked Saina Nehwal in quarter-final showdown at All England Open Premier Super Series 2012 in England, on Friday, March 9.
Xuerui, who has been positioned at number five in the world and the seventh seed in the Championship, showed her impressive craft as she played attacking game and overpowered the World Number Four Saina, who was the fourth seed of the tournament.
The lower ranked Chinese displayed tremendous show of top quality badminton and thrashed Saina in straight games by taking the court time for just 39 minutes.
On the other hand, Saina could not play her normal game as she remained struggling to find her flow. She could not take any set and lost the match in straight games without impressing local fans.
The first game was a nightmare for the higher ranked Indian as her rival played aggressive and flawless badminton.
Xuerui took an early lead by playing fast badminton and remained on track without facing any considerable resistance from Saina who was committing unforced mistakes.
Until the break, Xuerui established a reasonable lead of 11-8 on the score board.
After the break, Saina changed her tactics to end the domination of her lower ranked rival but failed as Xuerui was impressive in the court.
The Chinese was in her prime form as she did not miss any chance to stretch the gap and won the set with a wonderful margin of 21-13.
In the second game, Saina played better badminton and also did not commit unforced errors this time. She remained close to her in-form rival until the one-minute interval.
After the break, both ladies entertained the huge crowd with their wonderful craft and remained neck-to-neck until the score reached at 21-21.
At this crucial stage, Xuerui showed her maturity as she played with precision and won the set with a tight margin of 23-21.
The lower ranked Chinese emerged as the winner of this quarter-final contest with a 21-13 and 23-21 score on the board.
In the semi-final match, Xuerui will take on Chinese Taipei’s Tzu Ying Tai who defeated Korea’s Ji Hyun Sung in another quarter-final battle.