Japan Open: Tunjung Storms into Semifinals

Gregoria Mariska Tunjung achieved one of her best results at a Super 750 or above tournament, making the semifinals of the DAIHATSU Japan Open 2023 by toppling defending champion Akane Yamaguchi.

Tunjung hasn’t been at this stage of a Super 750 event since making the semifinals of the DANISA Denmark Open in October 2018.

Yamaguchi sent packing.

The world No.8 overcame the loss of the second game and held a lead all through the third to win 21-11 11-21 21-18 in 63 minutes. It was Tunjung’s fourth defeat of Yamaguchi in 15 matches.

In the semifinals, Tunjung faces He Bing Jiao, while recent Korea Open finalists An Se Young and Tai Tzu Ying run into each other in the lower half of the draw.

Lee/Wang Strike Big

Olympic champions Lee Yang/Wang Chi-Lin made an emphatic statement today, beating the pair that won back-to-back titles in Indonesia and Korea.

The Chinese Taipei duo have been searching for their best form since their historic win at Tokyo 2020, with mixed results. Facing Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty, who are in the form of their lives, Lee and Wang kept the intensity despite missing three match points in the second game, eventually hauling past the Indians, 21-15 23-25 21-16.

This is the third semifinal all year for the duo, and their best result since making the semifinals of the Badminton Asia Championships in April.

The Olympic champions take on world No.1 Fajar Alfian/Muhammad Rian Ardianto, who eased past senior compatriots Mohammad Ahsan/Hendra Setiawan 21-9 21-13.

Lee and Wang celebrate.

Axelsen Powers Past Prannoy

In men’s singles, Viktor Axelsen overcame shaky spells through the first two games to power past HS Prannoy and set up a semifinal against home hope Kodai Naraoka.

The top seed appeared irritable after blowing a 17-12 lead in the opening game and trailing through much of the second. When the situation demanded it, however, Axelsen buckled down to play spells of flawless badminton, and the physical effort appeared to take its toll on Prannoy, who was never in the contest in the final game.

The lower half of the draw will see fifth seed Jonatan Christie against Lakshya Sen, who stopped Japan’s Koki Watanabe 21-15 21-19.

Results (Day 4)

Order of play (Semifinals)

BWF World Tour News

Title Sponsor