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Axelsen halts Chong Wei's dream of winning a seventh Japan Open title


KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian badminton ace, Datuk Lee Chong Wei failed in his bid to win his seventh Japan Open Super Series title after losing to newly crowned world champion, Viktor Axelsen in a closely fought final match at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, today.

The Penangite, who is also the defending champion, lost 14-21 in the opening set before stepping up his gas to secure a 21-19 win in the second set but the towering Danish shuttler was in his element as he wrapped the match with a 21-14 victory.

The match which was telecast live by the local private 

It was Chong Wei's back-to-back defeat to Axelsen, having lost to the Dane in the World Super Series Finals in Dubai, United Arab Emirates in December last year.

For the record, 34 year-old Chong Wei has won the Japan Open title six times - 2007, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016.

Meanwhile, Misaki Matsutomo/Ayaka Takahashi of Japan won the women's doubles title after edging Kim Ha Na/Kong Hee Yong of South Korea; 21-18 and 21-16 while in the women's singles, the fifth seeded Carolina Marin of Spain stunned the reigning champion, He Bingjiao of China;23-21 and 21-12.

The third seed, Marcus Fernaldi Gideon/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo of Indonesia dislodged the host pair, Takuto Inoue/Yuki Kaneko, 21-12 and 21-15 to win the men's doubles title.

Wang Yilyu/Huang Dongping of China won the mixed doubles title by defeating the host country pair of Takuro Hoki/Sayaka Hirota of Japan, 21-13 and 21-8.


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