COPENHAGEN: Denmark’s Jan O Jorgensen 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 Jorgensen, 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 Jorgensen, 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 Jorgensen regained his composure to slam that door shut.
Jorgensen 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 Jorgensen, who is set to face either Japanese 15th seed Sho Sasaki or Taiwan’s Chou Tien-chen for a spot in the quarter-finals.
Former world junior champion Wang Zhengming of China was given a scare as Petr Koukal took him to a third game before the sixth seed outlasted the Czech 21-15, 19-21, 21-7.
Hong Kong’s veteran ninth seed Hu Yun was pushed all the way by Finn Ville Lang before prevailing 17-21, 21-15, 21-17 while South Korean Son Wan-ho, unlike a day earlier when he was locked in a gripping contest with Frenchman Brice Leverdez, progressed seamlessly into round three with a ruthless 21-6, 21-12 demolition of American Sattawat Pongnairat.
World number one Lee and second-ranked Chinese Chen Long are both in action later on Wednesday.
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.
Chinese World number two Wang Shixian takes on Hong Kong’s Yip Pui Yin later on Wednesday.