Birmingham: Denmark's Kenneth Jonassen is the last European in the men's singles heading into Friday's quarterfinals at the All England Open badminton championships.Four Europeans started the second day at the worldaÂÂs oldest badminton tournament but only one was still standing by the end of Thursday.Jonassen booked his quarterfinal place with a typically battling 60-minute win over South Korean Park Sung-hwan, going through 21-16, 18-21, 21-17 in the longest match of the men's second round.Meanwhile, Xie Xingfang and Zhang Ning were on course to repeat the last two women's singles finals, with China bidding to become the first nation to lift all five titles. The first Chinese man through was titleholder and world champion Lin Dan, who beat qualifier Simon Santoso 21-14 21-18. Lin meets another Indonesian, Sony Dwi Kuncoro, in the quarterfinals as he chases a fourth final in four years and his third All England title.Lin disappointedLin was disappointed that Malaysian Open winner Peter Gade and Olympic and former world champion, Taufik Hidayat were not barring his path to the final. He was seeded to meet Hidayat in the quarters and Gade in the semifinals but Hidayat withdrew in protest against the Indonesian officials, and Gade lost in the first round."I thought he would have won (against Palyama). He should have," Lin said.Jonassen, left to face the might of Asia on his own, will meet second-seeded Chen Jin of China, who put out Ng Wei of China 21-17, 21-18.The Dane beat Chen in their first meeting but has lost the last three."He will do what I did today, put me under constant pressure," Jonassen said. "He will be hard to beat and my best chance will be on the counterattack."I'm sad Peter is out of the tournament but if you aren't on the top of your game this is what can happen to anyone. I am just proud to be among the best eight going into the quarterfinals."Of the other three Europeans, Welshman Richard Vaughan lost to world silver medallist Bao Chunlai, the Chinese fifth seed who hit back from a set down to win 15-21, 21-12, 21-8.Chen Yu made it four Chinese players to reach the last eight when he beat Boonsak Ponsana of Thailand 21-14, 21-10. He will meet Commonwealth champion Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, who beat Danish qualifier Kasper Oedum 21-16 21-16.Dutchman Dicky Palyama, the surprise conqueror of Gade, saw his hopes of further progress dashed by Japanese qualifier Shoji Sato, who won 21-10, 21-14 to reach the quarterfinals for the third year in a row. He will face Bao.In women's play, double defending champion Xie beat qualifier Salakjit Ponsana of Thailand 21-10, 21-9 and next faces teammate Jiang Yanjiao, while Zhangs 21-18, 21-8 win over South Korean Hwang Hye-young set up a clash with Commonwealth silver medallist Wong Mew Choo of Malaysia.Wong got the better of Chinas Wang Lin 18-21, 21-17, 21-14 to be the only player not born in China to make the last eight.Only two Europeans are left in the hunt. World bronze medallist Xu Huaiwen of Germany put out Bulgarias Petya Nedeltcheva 21-13, 21-18 and she faces China's fifth seed Zhu Lin.France's eighth seed Pi Hongyan disposed of Germany's Juliane Schenk 21-12, 21-8 and will now play another Chinese-exile in Hong Kong's Shanghai-born Wang Chen, the third seed.
Topics : Badminton